Fox in the countryside

How to outfox foxes in your garden

Laura Bond
Authored by Laura Bond
Posted: Tuesday, March 12, 2024 - 16:20

As fox mating season kicks into high gear, the distinctive calls of foxes become more prevalent, marking the onset of an active and potentially disruptive time for gardeners. And, with the promise of hungry cubs on the horizon, you may be looking for ways to prevent these cunning creatures from rummaging through your bins and wreaking havoc in your garden.

To help you protect your outdoor spaces in a safe and humane way, Mesh Direct have put together these practical tips for deterring foxes during mating season.

Secure your garden

Making sure the perimeter of your garden is secure can do a lot of the work when it comes to deterring foxes. Keep in mind that foxes are expert burrowers and also excellent climbers, and so installing the correct fencing around your garden is important. We would recommend either burying part of the fence or installing a wire mesh skirt at the bottom to prevent digging. Assess the fencing for gaps and weak spots that can be reinforced with a non-chewable steel mesh such as a 50mm x 50mm hole welded wire mesh with a 2mm thick wire.

Use natural repellents

You can also incorporate natural repellents to discourage foxes from entering your garden. Common options include using strong-smelling substances such as citrus peels or chilli powder. These scents are harmless but known to be unpleasant to foxes, and they also have the benefit of deterring any neighbourhood cats.  

Buy motion-activated devices

If you’re looking for a more hi-tech solution, consider investing in motion-activated devices such as sprinklers or lights to startle and deter foxes when they approach. If you have any outdoor cameras, you can use these to monitor the foxes first and make note of their movements. Then, these devices can be strategically placed in areas where foxes are most likely to enter, helping to create an unwelcome environment.

Remove attractants

One of the main reasons why foxes try to trespass on our property is that they are attracted to food sources like rubbish bins. To reduce the temptation, secure your bin lids tightly and consider using bins with locking mechanisms to prevent easy access. If possible, try storing your bin in a garage or outbuilding, or building your own secure bin store. In addition to bins, you should also avoid leaving pet food, crops, or other potential food sources in easily accessible areas.

Scare them with sounds

Like most wild animals, foxes are sensitive to unexpected noises. Introduce noise deterrents to startle and discourage them from frequenting your garden. This could include setting up motion-activated devices that emit ultrasonic sounds that can be heard by foxes but not humans (so you won’t disturb your neighbours). Vary the times and locations to prevent foxes from becoming accustomed to the noises, increasing their effectiveness in deterring unwanted visits.

Dan Hancock, Managing Director at Mesh Direct, said: "As foxes become more active during mating season, it's crucial to employ proactive measures to protect your garden and maintain a harmonious coexistence with wildlife. These simple hacks can make a significant difference in keeping foxes at a respectful distance.

“Keeping out wild animals can be a challenge, however using a combination of deterrents together with the physical barrier of a sturdy wire mesh fence will offer the best long-term protection against foxes, with the added bonus of increasing your overall garden security."

Share this