ACCORDING to farmer hand; nick-named by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation — Basil — it was he who found the ‘still warm’ fox on Glen Esk Road in Conara at approximately 10.15 am yesterday morning.

Wishing to remain anonymous, he later rang the ABC Launceston studios and did an interview with an ABC reporter.

Basil says he pulled up his vehicle and found a dead fox that was ‘as good as new’, ‘looked like it had been whacked in the last hour or so’, ‘still warm …’, and ‘rigor mortis hadn’t set in’. Basil found the fox ‘laying on the bitumen’ and thought it had been ‘hit in the hindquarters’.

He thought it was hit that morning — perhaps by those ‘terrorists from the mainland’ using this back road from Launceston Airport. The ABC reporter asked, did he mean tourists?; Basil laughed and suggested that’s ‘what we call em’.

Basil told ABC radio he didn’t stay until the Fox Taskforce came; he had work to do.  But he and his ‘mate’ were later passing the area and were stopped. Basil told FFTF officers that they had put in the call.

‘The codgers thought that we put it there!’

The fox, described as an adult male, was taken to Mt Pleasant Laboratories for ‘scientific tests’ and ‘forensic examinations’.

The FFTF is appealing for the person who might have run over the fox to please come forward.

The preliminary findings of the post mortem examination should be able to determine the time of death, the likely cause of death and the age of the animal. If it is confirmed to be a very recently killed fox then maybe it’s a job for fox-sniffer dog.

Forensics including DNA testing to determine relationships to known fox sub-populations on the mainland, particularly in Victoria and investigation of the food in its gut might take a little longer.

In 2003, a wildlife consultant, Steve Cronin reported seeing a fox on a property close to this location.

David Obendorf

What Nick Mooney said earlier on Tasmanian Times

David Obendorf 

The preliminary findings of the post mortem examination should be able to determine the time of death, the likely cause of death and the age of the animal. If it is confirmed to be a very recently killed fox then maybe it’s a job for fox-sniffer dog.