New Brighton fox freed after getting tangled in football goal netting

A fox that became tangled in a goal net in a New Brighton back garden has been released back into the wild, The fox, named Autumn by the homeowners, was rescued by “The Fox Man” on Friday and subsequently released.

The Fox Man rescue was set up about 6 years ago by Paul McDonald. Then, in June 2019 it became an independent rescue dealing exclusively with foxes, and moved to Stockport where they are still based.

Carol Gowrie, one of the two people who work at the fox rescue centre said, “The fox was so badly entangled in the goal net that we couldn’t free her at the location.”

“So both her and the whole net came back to the fox unit here in Stockport. There was a risk of wounds and rope burns so we needed to check her over thoroughly before releasing her. It was easier for us to do that here where she could then get veterinary treatment if necessary.

‘Autumn’ tangled in the goal netting.

Carol added, “She was very lucky not to have any injuries as she had clearly been stuck, getting increasingly tangled, for quite some time. She was able to rest and recover for a few hours and was offered food and water.”

‘The Fox Man’ is based in Stockport as it is central to the area that they cover. The charity’s busiest areas are Manchester and surrounding areas, and Wirral, though their catchment area spreads up to Bradford and Leeds, across and down to South Yorkshire, Lancashire, Cheshire, parts of Derbyshire and down to Staffordshire, and even the West Midlands when necessary.

‘Autumn’ at the Stockport rescue centre.

Carol told us that despite the fox’s ordeal, it headed straight back to the garden it was rescued from. “Whenever we rescue a fox we always return it fairly late at night when the area is quiet, and to exactly where it was picked up from as foxes are territorial and live in social groups, so she knew exactly where she was going.”, she said.

Carol here – Autumn, the fox who was caught up in a football net, went home on Friday night after a short stay in the unit to get her untangled and checked over to make sure there were no wounds / abrasions from the tough strands of netting. (See Friday’s post / pics) Despite her ordeal she went straight back into the garden she came from! The homeowners are now busy raising awareness of the dangers of netting to all wildlife, so let’s help them get the word out.

Posted by The Fox Man on Sunday, 15 November 2020

Most requests for help from ‘The Fox Man’ come via messages to their Facebook page or by phone. They operate on a 24/7 basis. Sometimes other rescues or vets pass people on to them and they are also able to take foxes in for the RSPCA.

Carol offered advice to homeowners who aren’t aware of the dangers of sports nets to wildlife, “The homeowners hadn’t realised the danger of not tying up or removing, the net when not in use and were very upset to have inadvertently caused the fox such distress and they are now really keen to help raise awareness.”

Carol Gowrie warned of the dangers of goal nets to wildlife.