Foxes spotted in Paris streets

Foxes spotted in Paris - Photo: Daniel Kühne - Fotolia.com

Gardeners spot them in Jardin du Luxembourg in centre of the capital

FOXES have been spotted in the centre of Paris – even in the Jardin du Luxembourg and the Place de la République.

Ecological researchers say, however, that there are no more than about 15 foxes in the capital itself and nothing like the 10,000 that are said to inhabit London.

Foxes were cleared from Paris streets in the 1990s in anti-rabies campaigns but also scared off by increasing urbanisation but are now returning to feast on the daily mountain of rubbish thrown out by households.

Last month, Food Industry Minister Guillaume Garot said that each year between 20 and 30kg of food was binned for each person in France: "vegetables gone off, uneaten bread from restaurant meals, over-filled plates, unsold stocks from shops".

Patrick Haffner, of the Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle, told journalists that foxes were “opportunists” who would dig through rubbish heaps in the shelter of the night.

However, he said, there were surprisingly few foxes in the open spaces of the Bois de Boulogne, considering the area and the ample natural food supply.

Philippe Jacob, head of the newly set up Observatoire Parisien de la Biodiversité, said gardeners had spotted the foxes in the Jardin du Luxembourg and their return showed a healthy eco-system in Paris.

Related story: Families throw out €400 of food
Photo: Daniel Kühne - Fotolia.com

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