Steve Ford at the place where he found the poisoned fox
Animal lovers are pleading with people not to put down poison due to fears over the Island’s wildlife.
The warning comes following the death of a fox cub after it ingested an unknown substance in Rushenden last week.
Steve Ford, who runs LeoBay campsite on Rushenden Hill, at the end of Alsager Avenue, found it.
At first he thought it had been hit by a vehicle and had a broken back but after phoning Lorraine St John, of Kent Wildlife Rescue Service, who took the four-month-old cub to the vet, they found it had been poisoned.
She said: “It had become paralysed in its front legs and was trying to push itself under a hedge.
“By the time I got it to the vet it wasn’t even lifting its head.
“We gave it fluids and painkillers but unfortunately about five hours later it passed away.
“If Mr Ford hadn’t found it, it would have died a slow, horrible, painful death but at least it died in a bit of comfort and pain free.”
Ms St John said poisoned animals can be difficult to save if they don’t know what they have eaten.
She is really concerned about other wildlife such as hedgehogs, birds and field mice as well as animals which could eat prey that has already been poisoned and people’s pets.
“That’s where the real problem comes in because poison doesn’t target a specific animal,” she added.
Ray Allibone, of Swampy’s Wildlife Rescue, says it’s the fifth poisoned fox he knows about on Sheppey this year.
“These people are very stupid – leaving stuff lying about will kill pets and other wildlife,” he said.
“Foxes kill and eat a lot of rats and are not the pest people think they are.
“Humans must learn to live with our wildlife as they are fast losing there own natural habitat.”
Mr Ford said he was really upset by the incident and is sick to death of people abusing the landscape and creatures, especially motorcyclists who speed around near his site.
“There’s wildlife in abundance and all we see is it being run over,” he said.
“People should think twice before putting poison down – they were here before we were and they have got more of a right to the land.”