The recent and truly horrific attack on young twins in their cot in London - apparently by a fox (subsequently caught and killed) - has raised an outcry, and a perhaps understandable desire to cull the more than 10,000 urban foxes who live in the city. Some animal experts claim foxes don't naturally hunt or attack humans, and this must have been an impossibly rare accident - perhaps caused by the young cub feeling trapped in the room. On the other hand, the parents describe a bold and fearless animal.
The upshot is the mayor of London has discussed perhaps ridding the city of these animals. To lose the urban fox would be a shame. Not only has it inspired several excellent poems, from Ken Smith, and Robert Minhinnick, to others, but the urban fox is in itself a wonderful creature that adds much to the environment.
Not vermin, then. One recalls the outcry against the Canadian Wolf, and Farley Mowat's book, Never Cry Wolf, in response, which "humanised" the beasts, and saved many of their lives.