Muswell Hill Golf Club will not ‘consider culling foxes’ after campaigners’ outcry

An urban fox cub. Picture: PA/Owen Humphreys

An urban fox cub. Picture: PA/Owen Humphreys - Credit: PA

Muswell Hill Golf Club confirmed on Tuesday afternoon that it would no longer “consider the culling of foxes as a solution” to increased numbers of the creatures on its land.

Muswell Hill Golf Club

Muswell Hill Golf Club - Credit: Archant

The club had earlier been forced to deny there had been plans to cull foxes this week.

Animal campaigners from local and national groups mobilised in response to social media rumours that the Rhodes Avenue club was set to have pest control contractors carry out a “mass shooting” of foxes on the property.

Officials at the club categorically denied this had been the case and although campaign group Earth 2020 claimed to have confirmed the rumour in advance of taking action to prevent the suggested shooting, this newspaper has not been able to substantiate the claim.

On Tuesday morning, a club spokesperson said in a statement: “There have been a significant number of social media posts today about ‘a mass shooting of resident foxes and fox cubs’ allegedly planned today on the course at Muswell Hill Golf Club. This grossly misrepresents the position and nothing of this sort is scheduled.”

Muswell Hill Golf Club

Muswell Hill Golf Club - Credit: Archant

The club said the fox population “can, on occasion, cause damage and from time to time needs to be controlled”, but that when this was done “there are no inhumane practices used”.

In a second statement, the golf club clarified: “We have received much constructive feedback following our statement this morning, and, as such, Muswell Hill Golf Club will no longer consider the culling of foxes as a solution to the ongoing management of the fox population on the club’s grounds.”

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When contacted by the Ham&High, a club official said they did not know where the rumour had come from, but said it was “likely an innocent comment”.

A campaigner from the Earth 2020 group who only gave her name as Violet C, told this newspaper: “We had a report come in from an anonymous source saying there was going to be a fox cull happening. They thought it would be at some point either on Monday evening or Tuesday morning, so we started reaching out to the golf club.

“We don’t think this should be happening at all. They should respect the foxes. The golf club has to accommodate the foxes, not the other way around.”