Update (December 13, 2022): Thank you to all who weighed in with comments for officials in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, regarding the town’s reported decision to hire a trapper to capture foxes and dump them into “fox pens,” where they would be terrorized and possibly torn apart by dogs. Fortunately, officials have reconsidered the matter and decided to suspend plans to trap foxes. Please leave a message on the town’s Facebook page thanking officials for doing the right thing!
Check out PETA’s urgent alerts to learn about other animals who still need your help. Thank you for your compassion for animals.
Members of the Board of Commissioners in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, recently voted to spend taxpayer dollars to hire a trapper to remove foxes in a misguided attempt to protect sea turtle nests. Shockingly, board members chose to allow the foxes trapped during this initiative to be transported to fox pens. Fox penning is a blood sport, in which trapped foxes are dumped into fenced enclosures where packs of dogs are then released. The terrified, disoriented foxes are chased to the point of exhaustion, cornered, and often torn to shreds. Survivors endure this horror repeatedly during these vile events, which can last for days.
A video of the board’s discussion (beginning at timestamp 1:36:00) shows that members voted to allocate $2,500 of town funds for this appalling project, even though they admitted that they had no idea how many foxes reside on the island, what areas the foxes frequent, or even how many sea turtle nests are disturbed by foxes each year. Board members are heard decrying the foxes’ purportedly emboldened behavior while also mentioning that residents have been feeding the animals—an obvious cause of fox encounters! And there’s been no public survey to determine whether residents are even concerned about foxes. In short, it appears that the board voted to condemn these animals to a harrowing death without understanding anything about their population dynamics. Spoiler alert: Removing individual foxes won’t reduce the population, because the remaining animals will breed at an accelerated rate.
PETA contacted the Ocean Isle Beach Board of Commissioners and urged it to reconsider. After this alert was posted, officials responded to let us know that the board will revisit the issue during its December 13 meeting. Please take a moment to e-mail the board and urge it to scrap the plan to trap foxes. Ask it to focus instead on nest-protection measures that are effective and don’t harm animals, such as banning single-use plastic bags and working to reduce light pollution on beaches. Then please share this alert with all your contacts.