back to article CompSci student bitten by fox after feeding it McNuggets

An Australian university may euthanise campus foxes after they bit computing students. Foxes are not native to Australia but were introduced so they could be hunted. The animals have, predictably, become feral pests that devour local wildlife. And now they're after computing students, too. As reported in University of New …

  1. cb7

    ♫ who let the foxes in? Doop Doop Doop Doop Doop ♫

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ring-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding!

      Gering-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding!

      Gering-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding!

      Oops, wrong song!

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Fox obviously has good taste

    Feeing it McNuggets! Where is the beef! (sic)

    Shows that even suppsoedly dumb animals have better morals when it comes to food that we do. IMHO, nothing that McD's serves qualifies as proper food.

    Let the downvoting begin but in my area, the whole place was better when they were closed. Now their discarded containers litter the streets once again. If anything it is worse than before.

    1. Glen 1 Silver badge

      Re: The Fox obviously has good taste

      "litter the streets"

      Yeah, but that's the 5-6 foot foxes. Would be the same with any food place.

      See also: the aftermath of sunny days on parks, beaches etc. even *with* the pandemic.

  3. heyrick Silver badge

    Seems crazy to rid a place of wild animals because some students failed to appreciate the "wild" part.

    1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      Seems crazy that they haven't already tried to eradicate them

      1. BebopWeBop Silver badge
        Pirate

        And equally crazy that their other critters (rats etc) have been allowed to get to numbers where they are considered attractors for the foxes.

        Now I like foxes in their proper place - and the British countryside is one such place (preferably without some baying hooray on horseback in pursuit), but Australia is not. Like many non-native species they were introduced (for 'sport' I believe) and have a devastating effect on native fauna. Time for them to go. I should add, so you can see my bias, that living in the Scottish Borders, we trap and shoot Grey Squirrels as well. Cute, yes, a danger to the native Red - very very much so.

        1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

          While I appreciate the desire to not have introduced animals from what I understand the problem with the native red squirrel is not so much the grey squirrel but that the grey squirrel is somewhat less picky than the red and tends to outcompete it for food range.

          1. Headley_Grange Silver badge

            Poxy Greys

            The thing about range is true but the main problem is that grey squirrels carry squirrel pox which they are immune to but which kills red squirrels.

            1. BebopWeBop Silver badge

              Re: Poxy Greys

              Exactly. The pox does kill some greys, but it invariably fatal to reds. In many ways, they are largely complimentary - the reds being lighter tend to stay higher - which may explain in part how my rather fearsome mogs bring in greys, presumably intercepted on the ground, but they never brought in Reds in a different house in a Red population area.

              I should say this is a mixed blessing. Few things are worse than confronting the lower half of a squirrel, dismembered ion the hall carpet in the morning. I suffer for their art.

              In fact, the score over the last three years is trapped and shooting: 7, Pi and Mu (for they are so named) :3. But for the moment a determined campaign means that we see Reds on the fringes of our woods, and Grey sighting are considerably lower than they were (maybe keeping out of sight :-).

              1. Chris G Silver badge

                Re: Poxy Greys

                It is just as well red squirrels live higher up and out of the way, cute as they are, UK red squirrels carry leprosy.

                So try not to kiss them frequently.

                1. gerdesj Silver badge
                  Childcatcher

                  Re: Poxy Greys

                  https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-37949557

                  "What we're trying to tease out now is did the squirrels get leprosy from people and have just been carrying it ever since, or in fact does it work the other way round - were humans originally infected from squirrels?"

                  1. This post has been deleted by its author

                2. SuperGeek

                  Re: Poxy Greys

                  "It is just as well red squirrels live higher up and out of the way, cute as they are, UK red squirrels carry leprosy.

                  So try not to kiss them frequently."

                  Or as the World Health Organisation recently advised, "Don't have unprotected sex with wild animals"

              2. Tom 7 Silver badge

                Re: Poxy Greys

                Where I live in the west country I lose about 4 or 5 tons of hazelnuts to greys every year. The old boys tell me it wasn't a problem till the greys arrived. Alas modern farming means they're not considered a local food source any more and no-one bothers to cull them and I have no chance on my own.

        2. S4qFBxkFFg

          In the long run, pine marten recovery may be the best way to solve the grey problem. Actively being reintroduced in England: https://www.vwt.org.uk/projects-all/pine-marten-recovery-project/

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Interesting, as where I live we have red and grey, the red are very aggressive, while the slightly larger grey are skittish. But that doesn't mean our reds are the same as yours (smaller than the greys).

          I saw a black squirrel at Niagara falls 2 years ago, same size as a grey, very pretty fur. I was told it was not a native breed.

          1. sad_loser

            BSM

            Black squirrels are just a variant of grey squirrels

            We occasionally see them in the UK.

            I serve our squirrels as sushi ( squshi), soup (squoup) or curry (squrry), the consumption of which is a keenly awaited rite of passage for suitors of my teenage children.

            BSM

          2. Tom 7 Silver badge

            I believe the black ones are just greys with a black coat. But you can get dark reds too!

          3. J27 Bronze badge

            South-eastern Canada is full of the black subtype of grey squirrels. Almost all the squirrels around here are black and enormous.

      2. Richard Gray 1
        Joke

        Yes, it is surprising that they haven't eradicated the feral beasts, but I suppose that you're now allowed to trap students.

        It's Political Correctness gone mad I tell you ...

      3. PassiveSmoking

        Wow, what did students to do you that was so bad that you want to wipe them out?

        1. BebopWeBop Silver badge
          Joke

          Well they are students and I am no longer one...

        2. Headley_Grange Silver badge

          What did students do to me?

          (UK) Students don't drink any more - so there must be something wrong with them. Numerous unis have shut their bars completely - Portsmouth, Dundee, etc. The bar in my local uni is tiny, often empty and sells more coffee than beer. If students don't drink then what's the point of them?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: What did students do to me?

            >>(UK) Students don't drink any more - so there must be something wrong with them.

            I'm guessing the massive tuition fee bills they get, coupled with not getting the grants, housing benefits and union subsidised beer that the older generation were entitled to has something to do with it?

            We had it so good. And then had to make sure the next generation couldn't profit like we did!

            1. SloppyJesse

              Re: What did students do to me?

              If you had housing benefit, grants and subsidised beer then I'm the 'next generation' as I didn't have access to any of those - but I definitely remember drinking large quantities.

              My 3 offspring all went through a phase of drinking but all pretty much stopped by 20. They seemed mainly put off by the choice between trendy bars with music blaring or smelly pubs full of oldies.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: What did students do to me?

                Ordering "tables" of pints of beer during happy hours.

                Ahh the good old days.

            2. Glen 1 Silver badge

              Re: What did students do to me?

              "We had it so good. And then had to make sure the next generation couldn't profit like we did!"

              I prefer the phrase "voted not to pay for it". As that puts the responsibility where it lies. With the voters.

              When tuition fees were ~£1K per year, its was possible to support yourself from a part time job (with optionally minimal student debt). I know, because I did it.

              With fees currently at £9k, even a median income person ( ~£25k ) would be paying more than a third of their income. That's assuming you could fit in around your full time job. Which tells you all you need to know about the types of folk the gov want getting degrees.

              Student finance in the UK looks generous at first glance. Loans are large and low interest. You don't have to begin paying them back until after you earn over a reasonably high threshold.

              Until you dig deeper into the payback rules on the other side. The way the thresholds work effectively create a new tax bracket where you are paying an *extra* 9% of what you earn over the threshold. (extra to other taxes, because no, its not tax deductible). Given the large sums owed you could be paying that rate into your 50s.

              So its hilarious when politicians look like they are committing career suicide by suggesting regular income tax gets tweaked by a percent of so.

              If you make education expensive, only the rich get educated. There are those that turn their nose up at everyone and their dog being able to get a Bachelors degree. Somehow, they see the competition as a bad thing.

              The thing is, If all these folks were always capable of earning that degree, artificially limiting access for those people serves no purpose other than gate-keeping. (insert prejudice of choice here)

            3. harmjschoonhoven
              Unhappy

              Re: What did students do to me?

              Centuries ago people registered as students at the Leiden University in The Netherlands were exempt from paying local beer tax .... Don't know when that mos was retracted.

          2. Tom 7 Silver badge

            Re: What did students do to me?

            I spent 3 years roaring drunk and having a great time at uni. I returned a couple of years after graduating to discover the head of security having a retirement do in the main uni bar (now closed) and, having been active in putting on lots of gigs and events we'd rubbed each other up a lot but had fun, went to wish him a happy retirement. He said 'I wish you buggers were back, the kids today are a nightmare - they work till 9pm and then get drunk and fight, they just dont know how to enjoy themselves'

            Not saying beer is the answer to everything but if you choose your questions carefully...

          3. PassiveSmoking

            Re: What did students do to me?

            Damn, if students don't get drunk then where will the Daily Mail get those photos from that prove that students are all debauched hedonistic brats who spend all their time puking in the street instead of studying? I mean they've already had to recycle images from 2017 for their annual "students suck" Fresher's week story in 2018

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: What did students do to me?

              "where will the Daily Mail get those photos"

              They will pay friends and colleague to stage/fake the shots, as they do normally?

        3. Arthur the cat Silver badge

          Wow, what did students to do you that was so bad that you want to wipe them out?

          In my days as a CS academic there were one or two students who we wouldn't have minded seeing taken by wolves(*). Sadly there were no wolves on campus.

          (*) Specifically one idiot who I supervised in 3rd year lab who told me almost every week that his terminal wasn't working when he'd simply failed to switch it on. His pièce de résistance was the time he insisted he had switched it on and it still wasn't working. To be fair he had, but as I pointed out while waving the three pin plug at him, plugging it in to the power is also needed.

          1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
            Windows

            Your restraint is admirable.

            I would have found it difficult not to advise said individual to seriously consider a career in Human Resources or Finance.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Trollface

              They would have been under-qualified for HR with only a Computer Science degree.

      4. heyrick Silver badge

        "Seems crazy that they haven't already tried to eradicate them."

        Well, both students survived. That probably counts as "damn near tame" in Aussie terms.

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          "Well, both students survived. That probably counts as "damn near tame" in Aussie terms."

          To be fair, as per the article, the fox isn't a native. The fact it's survived against the native fauna is a tribute to its tenacity.

      5. Korev Silver badge
        Joke

        Seems crazy that they haven't already tried to eradicate them

        I know, they get rid of a load each year and then stupidly let a load of Freshers in every autumn...

        1. Precordial thump

          Yeah, nah mate. Here in Straya we start semesters in the height of summer. Makes it harder for the freshers to spot the tiger snakes in the long grass.

    2. ibmalone Silver badge

      You'd think in Australia of all places "don't interact with the wildlife" would be common knowledge.

      (However, foxes don't belong in Australia, nor do rats or rabbits. The local wild animals might appreciate them gone.)

      1. You aint sin me, roit
        Pirate

        Let them eat rabbits

        Rabbits and rats are the biggest problems, luckily foxes prey on them... so while they shouldn't have been introduced maybe now they are there let them do their thing.

        Students who think foxes are cuddly and should be fed/stroked are acceptable collateral damage.

        1. rcomm

          Re: Let them eat rabbits

          I knew an old lady. She swallowed a fly.

          I don't know why she swallowed a fly. Perhaps she'll die...

          1. Imhotep

            Re: Let them eat rabbits

            If the next step is to swallow a spider, remind her that this is Australia.

          2. Antron Argaiv Silver badge

            Re: Let them eat rabbits

            Flies are easily swallowed in Australia, because like the other wildlife, they are numerous and fearless.

            Unlike the other wildlife, they are, for some unknown reason, not deadly.

            1. Denarius Silver badge
              Happy

              Re: Let them eat rabbits

              Antron, not quite. Some of the flies carry truly fearsome gastro diseases. In an Oz summer, that is deadly if not treated quickly. So yes, even our flies can kill

    3. Anonymous C0ward

      Wild? It was absolutely livid.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Considering that Oz is full of things that will try to kill you (Terry P quote - "some of the sheep don't bite"), why would anybody want to stroke an animal?

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        The question is how does a small furry animal that isn't terminally venomous survive ?

        1. My other car is also a Trabant.

          According to just about all European folklore, foxes are cunning. Brains baffle brawn, at least part of the time.

        2. BebopWeBop Silver badge

          Well, unassuming humans appear to get by despite the odds.

          1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            But only Australians, anybody else gets immediately eaten

  4. phogan

    This is why we can't have nice things.

    They're not domesticated right, they're still wild animals even if they happen to live on and around a campus. I am baffled by people who think they can interact with random animals like they can with their pets.

    Several years ago, my local university had to cut down what was basically a very small forest on campus and erect a few fences. Deer liked to hang out in the wooded area (as did people) and inevitably students would try to pet the deer or feed them (despite signs) and to no ones surprise some got hurt either as a result of getting to close or deer getting aggressive having associated people with food.

    1. Peter2 Silver badge

      Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

      I'm not. It's in fashion to have animals portrayed as people in animated films and stupid people (of which there are a lot) can't separate fiction and fantasy.

      Personally i'd be quite happy with keeping some cute looking, but vicious (and non lethal!) animals around just to demonstrate the meaning behind the term "once bitten, twice shy". Removing the things that bite just perpetuates the problem of ignorant students that believe that wild animals are actually just like them.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

        "It's in fashion to have animals portrayed as people in animated films and stupid people (of which there are a lot) can't separate fiction and fantasy"

        I hope these people do not watch Beastars.

        1. Teiwaz Silver badge

          Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

          animorphism I can somewhat understand.

          But Princesses singing duets with clocks and candlesticks?

          I'm always half expecting a reveal that said young lady is actually really barefoot, straightjacketed and drooling in a padded room banging her head off a padded wall.

          1. Outski

            Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

            See the Buffy episode Normal Again https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0533464/?ref_=ttep_ep17

      2. Glen 1 Silver badge

        Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

        "cute looking, but vicious (and non lethal!)"

        Not the bees!

    2. John H Woods Silver badge

      Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

      It's not just wild animals - it's other peoples animals. I know lots of cases of horses that have become seriously ill or even died because well-meaning people think that they might like oaty bars or grass clippings. Unfortunately, horses eat tasty things and, unlike dogs, can't vomit.

      1. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

        Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

        And unlike dogs, don't eat vomit.

    3. Bowlers

      Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

      Students...will they never learn?

      1. Imhotep

        Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

        Going by personal experience: No, they won't. Not until they leave campus and have to.

    4. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

      Several years ago, my local university had to cut down what was basically a very small forest on campus

      Somehow that just seems wrong to cut down the trees and put a fence up to keep the deer out. Would it not have been better to fence in the humans to keep them away from the deer?

    5. Nunyabiznes Silver badge

      Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

      You should look up some YT vids of people in Yellowstone Park. People routinely try to interact with bison, wolves! and grizzly bears!! Even the black bears will gnaw on you given the opportunity (ie you force your way into their personal space).

      I've watched people approach bull elk in rut, cow moose's calves, and bison personally. Yelling at them doesn't have the effect you think it would.

      1. BebopWeBop Silver badge

        Re: This is why we can't have nice things.

        I'll bet the animals reactions to their actions have an effect though!

  5. Winkypop Silver badge
    Joke

    Foxes, rabbits, toads, et al

    No place in Aus.

    Not native.

    Not dangerous enough.

    1. TonyJ Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Foxes, rabbits, toads, et al

      "... Foxes, rabbits, toads, et al

      No place in Aus.

      Not native.

      Not dangerous enough..."

      Reminds of the other Oz joke:

      Scientists have just concluded the longest, most detailed study of the flora and fauna of Australia, to finally determine what is not harmful to humans.

      And the answer is "Some of the sheep"

      1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Some of the sheep

        Naturally there was emphasis on the word 'Some'...

        1. Rameses Niblick the Third Kerplunk Kerplunk Whoops Where's My Thribble? Silver badge

          Re: Some of the sheep

          Oz joke? I thought this was courtesy of Sir PTerry, in "The Last Continent" , circa 1998.

          Death held out a hand. I WANT, he said, A BOOK ABOUT THE DANGEROUS CREATURES OF FOURECKS–

          Albert looked up and dived for cover, receiving only mild bruising because he had the foresight to curl into a ball.

          After a while Death, his voice a little muffled, said: ALBERT, I WOULD BE SO GRATEFUL IF YOU COULD GIVE ME A HAND HERE.

          Albert scrambled up and puled at some of the huge volumes, finally dislodging enough of them to allow his master to clamber free.

          HMM… Death picked up a book at random and read the cover.

          DANGEROUS MAMMALS, REPTILES, AMPHIBIANS, BIRDS, FISH, JELLYFISH, INSECTS, SPIDERS, CRUSTACEANS, GRASSES, TREES, MOSSES, AND LICHENS OF TERROR INCOGNITA, he read. His gaze moved down the spine. VOLUME 29C, he added. OH. PART THREE, I SEE.

          He glanced up at the listening shelves. POSSIBLY IT WOULD BE SIMPLER IF I ASKED FOR A LIST OF THE HARMLESS CREATURES OF THE AFORESAID CONTINENT?

          They waited.

          IT WOULD APPEAR THAT–

          “No, wait, master. Here it comes.”

          Albert pointed to something white zigzagging lazily through the air. Finally Death reached up and caught the single sheet of paper.

          He read it carefully and then turned it over briefly just in case anything was written on the other side.

          “May I?” said Albert. Death handed him the paper.

          “‘Some of the sheep,’“ Albert read aloud. “Oh, well. Maybe a week at the seaside’d be better then.”

          1. BebopWeBop Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: Some of the sheep

            Actually a British joke, but I am given to understand by my Aus friends that many othem appreciate it.

      2. You aint sin me, roit

        Re: Foxes, rabbits, toads, et al

        And the sheep are immigrants...

    2. I am the liquor

      Re: Foxes, rabbits, toads, et al

      The only place Aussie CompSci students should be seeing foxes and rabbits is in an example problem on their Programming 101 course.

  6. Twanky Bronze badge

    occasional rabbits

    Shirley everyone knows that there's no such thing as an 'occasional rabbit'. Whatever the occasion, they're always late.

    'Oh my ears and whiskers, how late it's getting!'

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: occasional rabbits

      The Occasion for rabbits, is being ' in the mix'.

      Populations go from decimated by periodic plagues of mixamitosis to periodic plaguse of bunnies.

      As far as petting foxes is concerned, this is a university full of bright kids right?

      It would be even funnier if it was in Darwin uni'.

      1. Glen 1 Silver badge

        Re: occasional rabbits

        "university full of bright kids right?"

        Yes. However, experience is the best teacher.

        Off topic sidenote: I always wonder were folks in the IT industry think others got their experience from.

        I sometimes see people posting words to the effect of "You don't hire people to do X unless they have already done X for years" or "that's what you get for hiring people who don't know what they're doing"

        Its as if they expect university to have taught their new hires years worth of experience in this one particular job near the start of their career. I wonder if these people stopped learning some time ago, and if these are the folks writing the job ads.

        See also: Junior developer roles requiring years of experience. If you have that experience, you're not applying for roles with 'Junior' in the title.

  7. Twanky Bronze badge

    University authorities will attempt to reduce debris in the hope that trims campus rodent populations and causes foxes to move elsewhere of their own accord.

    They're looking at the problem wrongly. The campus is littered with McD and other fast food outlets' rubbish and the rubbish attracts rodents and they attract foxes which bite the students. Seems to me that they'd do better to purge the campus of slovenly students.

    In other news: Research finds Comp-Sci students tastier than McDonald's chicken nuggets.

    1. Headley_Grange Silver badge

      @Twanky: "In other news....": that would be Fox News would it?

    2. ibmalone Silver badge

      It's the circle of life.

    3. DavCrav Silver badge

      "They're looking at the problem wrongly. The campus is littered with McD and other fast food outlets' rubbish and the rubbish attracts rodents and they attract foxes which bite the students. Seems to me that they'd do better to purge the campus of slovenly students."

      Or purge it of McDonalds.

      1. My other car is also a Trabant.

        And nothing of value would be lost. Certainly not nutritional value.

  8. autisticatheist
    Thumb Up

    To be expected

    If you fed me McNuggets, I'd bite you.

  9. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
    Pint

    So Then No Mozzarella

    & obviously no FriesFox.

  10. Neil Barnes Silver badge

    Student puts hand full of food near apex predator

    And is surprised when bitten... think of it as evolution in action.

    1. Filippo

      Re: Student puts hand full of food near apex predator

      Student puts hand MADE of food near apex predator...

      1. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge

        Re: Student puts hand full of food near apex predator

        food near apex predator -- what can go wrong, huh?

  11. Denarius Silver badge
    Flame

    Once caught

    Most of us shoot the damned things,caught or otherwise. Brought in by some pom major whining "farmer always dislike a gentleman's pastime" Haven't found his grave yet to spit on it. Also, judging from the airhead city dwellers I have had to work with, or worse, meet at polling booths, most of them seem to think Disneys cartoons like Bambi are nature documentaries. Much prefer the Mr Hell show parody of Lion King.

    1. Caver_Dave
      FAIL

      Re: Once caught

      Tomasz Schafernaker, a BBC weather presenter, recently admitted on TV that he thought sheep and lambs were different species until his mid 30's. And this guy managed to get a degree in Meteorology!

      1. Stephen Wilkinson

        Re: Once caught

        Probably because he had his head in the clouds

      2. Hubert Cumberdale

        Re: Once caught

        It's fine, because contrary to popular belief, sheep ≠ clouds. Anyway, never mind his degree in meteorology, Tomasz Schafernaker must have a master's degree in seamlessly covering up after a rude gesture. But it seems to be from the University of Wrexham.

      3. Precordial thump

        Re: Once caught

        de: Schaf = sheep

        Sounds like his ancestors knew more about them than he did. Curious as to exactly how, though...

      4. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

        Re: Once caught

        I always thought young girls were given ponies... that grew up into horses as there masters aged...

      5. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

        Re: Once caught

        Wombles aren't real. But it seems that rooster wombles are.

  12. Fading Silver badge
    Holmes

    I see an obvious flaw in their plan.

    "University authorities will attempt to reduce debris in the hope that trims campus rodent populations and causes foxes to move elsewhere of their own accord." but according to the story the students are another food source - so perhaps they need to be culled so the foxes move on?

  13. OssianScotland Silver badge
    Headmaster

    Subject Specificity

    Are foxes attracted only to Comp Sci students, or have other disciplines been involved to (Enquiring Minds etc...)

    If the former, is it down to behaviour of that student cohort, or is there something special about them the foxes find attractive (regular users of Mozilla browsers, perhaps?).

    If the latter, we need a full set of data - Student Subject, circumstances of bite, result....

    There should be at least a PhD in it somewhere!

  14. Updraft102 Silver badge

    Really?

    Us are supposed to be the smart ones, you say?

    1. seven of five Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Really?

      Ah, sorry, not you :)

      (sorry for being mean, but this was a comment too tempting not to make)

  15. anthonyhegedus Silver badge

    It's ironic that foxes - a cute, friendly mammal which is fastidiously clean and remarkably bonded with man - could possibly be euthanised, whereas the preponderance of all manner of really dangerous animals exists in Australia as a whole. Why don't they do something about the spiders, the insects, the sharks (both sea-sharks and the new land-sharks I think I've heard about), and the venomous shrews or whatever they're called?

    It seems its one rule for scary-as-hell arachnids and another for cute vulpine quadrupeds!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      New?

      Naw, Land-Sharks have been around for decades...

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_NS2H55dxI

    2. W.S.Gosset Silver badge

      Actually our jumping spiders are really friendly.

      Seriously.

  16. RockBurner

    Intelligence (smarts) has nothing to do with taught knowledge or learnt experience (although they are complimentary).

    I'm not at all surprised that young people brought up almost exclusively on Peppa Pig and other similar 'entertain the children but hide the reality' media in their early years; and educated in a stripped to the marrow formalised system that focuses on box-ticking; have no idea what the natural world is actually like and what sort of behaviour to expect from real wild animals. (Despite the preponderance of nature documentaries).

    1. Neil Barnes Silver badge

      Nature documentaries

      Even then, not really helped by 'but this mouse was lucky... it got away!' editing/commentary.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Nature documentaries

        But you can't let the poor little darlings know there is anything nasty out there... you must protect them and coddle them and keep them safe - and then watch in surprise when they - and you - discover that sometimes speaking nicely to something (or someone) doesn't help and that the nasty man in the balaclava really doesn't give a damn that you want to commiserate about his childhood, he just wants to take your money and possessions and will stab you if you don't hand them over - and he might just decide to stab you anyway, even if you do hand them over.

      2. Strahd Ivarius Bronze badge

        Re: Nature documentaries

        better than "this moose was unlucky... we got away!" perhaps?

    2. Alister Silver badge

      Yep, we are now seeing the situation round here that tourists walking through a farmer's fields are complaining about cows and sheep being threatening, and asking for the animals to be locked up.

      1. My other car is also a Trabant.

        That's nothing. Some Londoners moved into Chew Valley next door to a pig farm and then complained to the Council about the smell.

        The ignorance of city people about country life has been a thing since long before the first student offered a fox what was either a tasty looking finger or, this being Australia, something resembling a snake.

  17. x 7

    foxes are trivial compared with............

    the Drop Bears

    what are the ozzies doing about those?

    https://australian.museum/learn/animals/mammals/drop-bear/

    https://www.australiangeographic.com.au/news/2013/04/drop-bears-target-tourists,-study-says/

    1. BebopWeBop Silver badge

      Re: foxes are trivial compared with............

      Dressing their hair with vegemite, adorning it with forks and using a proper accent one assumes

      1. Chris G Silver badge

        Re: foxes are trivial compared with............

        Yeah Thylarctus Plummetus, deadly drop bears are only scared of Yara-ma-yha-mu, an even deadlier beast that is possibly related or at least drops out of trees but sucks the blood of its victim.

  18. Mike Richards

    Australia

    If there was one country where I thought everyone knew that all the wildlife is out to kill you...

  19. C.Carr

    Idiot college kids thinks: Well, I think this wild animal is really cute, so it necessarily follows then that the animal won't bite me if I move my hand towards its head.

    Dumbarses.

  20. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Go

    Meanwhile, the headline in the "Australian Fox Times" reads...

    Local fox heroically defends himself as human attempt to poison him with "chicken" nugget!

  21. ChrisElvidge

    Serious bites?

    Being bitten by an unknown animal should always be treated as possible tetanus / rabies transmission. (I know rabies is not endemic (yet)).

  22. LoPath
    Coat

    Journalist missed the obvious

    What does the fox say... about all of this?

    1. Alister Silver badge

      Re: Journalist missed the obvious

      That would be Fox News, and nobody believes them...

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Technically I own several small businesses.

    Of ferrets.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Stupid students. I love feeding wild animals, last time I was in oz I gave grey kangaroos some peach stones and a possum who was rooting through a bin in a melbourne park after dark an apple core.

    1. JassMan

      "stupid students. I love feeding wild animals"

      Stupid AC - kangaroos are herbivores. They should never be given possums which are made of meat even if served with a side order of peach stones which are also toxic (being full of prussic acid.)

      1. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

        Yeah! What did the possum do to deserve being feed to the 'roo? Possums are a protected species in Australia. Bad human.

      2. My other car is also a Trabant.

        I thought that was the "joke" - poisoning grey kangaroos with peach stones.

        But who calls it "Prussic acid" these days (note capitalisation unless you're French)? Cyanide.

        1. x 7

          Not prussic acid, its Amygdalin - which can release cyanide

  25. Gene Cash Silver badge

    Eating CS students

    They should move to the US... one CS student here would last an entire fox family all winter.

  26. First Light

    Wombats?

    Forget foxes, wombats are the real danger.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2016/aug/22/woman-attacked-by-wombat-thought-she-was-going-to-die

    1. My other car is also a Trabant.

      Re: Wombats?

      "Wombat" sounds so harmless - like a small, cuddly variety of bat. And then you realise it's an extremely strong animal with a near-bulletproof padded backside that it can use as a weapon, the size of a Labrador,and territorial. And they drop cubic faeces which they use as building bricks for marking territory.

      And that's part of the less worrying Australian fauna.

    2. Roger Varley

      Re: Wombats?

      Warning: Old Joke Alert

      Q: What do you play with a Wombat?

      A: Wom

  27. ChrisBedford

    Grammar!

    *WE* computer folks are supposed to be smart enough to know how to use English, too, right?

    1. guyr

      *WE* computer folks are supposed to be smart enough to know how to use English

      Same thought - apparently English is not a prerequisite for writing Reg columns.

  28. guyr

    It's likely the foxes will be euthanised

    No, that's what we tell ourselves we do to our dogs, so we are able to sleep following the deed. The foxes will be simply killed.

    1. My other car is also a Trabant.

      Re: It's likely the foxes will be euthanised

      We don't "tell ourselves". When your dog has developed inoperable liver cancer and you ask the vet not to bring her round from the sedative, you wish that the medical profession would do the same for you. Still can't sleep that night, but from sadness not guilt.

  29. Clunking Fist Bronze badge

    Squirrel

    In Kensington Gardens, I proffered some of my muffin to a friendly squirrel. He or she promptly put their upper front teeth through my thumb nail. I guess feeding swans first, lowered my defences.

    1. My other car is also a Trabant.

      Re: Squirrel

      There used to be quite a lot of people proffering muffins in Kensington Gardens, but a prudent person certainly wouldn't want to eat one. You never knew where it had been.

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