Rate of fox trapping in decline, 2016 and 2017 numbers show

The number of foxes trapped on P.E.I. has jumped considerably between 2016 and 2017, according to P.E.I. Fish and Wildlife.

The rate of trapping is influenced by factors including pelt prices, weather, and even the cost of gas

About 340 foxes were trapped in 2016 and approximately 520 in 2017. ( Jim Cumming/Shutterstock)

The number of foxes trapped on P.E.I. has jumped considerably between 2016 and 2017 increasing by 53 per cent, according to P.E.I. Fish and Wildlife. 

Around 340 foxes were trapped in 2016 and approximately 520 in 2017.

However, the number of foxes trapped in 2016 was the lowest total on record since data was first collected in the 1990s, said wildlife biologist Garry Gregory. 

The number of foxes trapped in 2017 was also below the long-term average of around 700 foxes per year. 

The rate of trapping is influenced by factors including pelt prices, weather, and even the cost of gas, Gregory said.

But the spike in fox trapping in 2017 is most likely related to the current state of the fur market, he said. 

"The pelt prices are fairly low for most species," Gregory said. "That generally results in reduced trapper effort, which generally results in reduced harvest."

The fox population is robust on P.E.I., especially in urban and suburban areas where populations continue to grow, he said. 

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With files by Laura Chapin

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