Melbourne, foxes and calci-virus

To: "Laurence Living" <>, "birding" <>, "Keith Johnson" <>, "ken & vivien harris" <>, "eddie garcia" <>
Subject: Melbourne, foxes and calci-virus
From: "Scott O'Keeffe" <>
Date: Wed, 15 Aug 2001 21:37:15 +1000
Hi Laurie.

Are foxes more common, or are people just taking more of an interest in them
(and therefore making more of an effort to see them)?  Are they more common
or just more visible?  Foxes are happy to scavenge.  I've found things like
Mars bar wrappers in scats.  I have heard it suggested that increased road
traffic and the increasing prevalence of take-away foods are both
contributing to an increase in sightings.  Notice that I was careful not to
say an increase in numbers.  If foxes are scavenging along roads more often
because road-killed animals and take-away food scraps are increasingly
abundant, then the foxes may be simply more noticeable.  I'm not trying to
be funny.  Its just that unravelling the relationship between predators and
their prey is rarely as simple as drawing simple conclusions from what often
turn out to be impressions rather than quantatative observations.

Scott O'Keeffe

-----Original Message-----
 Behalf Of Laurence
Sent: 14 August 2001 18:11
To: birding; Keith Johnson; ken & vivien harris; eddie garcia
Subject: Melbourne, foxes and calci-virus

Hello birders

The recent thread on 1080 and foxes around Brisbane reminded me of the
increasing frequency of sighting foxes in and near Melbourne this last
twelve months or so.

In that time I have seen foxes in the Dandenong Ranges National Park,
Jells Park, Braeside Park and in the wetlands at Edithvale, and none of
them were particularly shy.

The number fox road kills around Melbourne, I believe, has increased
substantially, with hardly a day passing when I dont see one going to

Why are so many foxes about? Has the dcline in the rabbit population
forced them to prey further afield?

Laurie Living

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