I HAVE just read Ms Craven's letter “This is how I feel about foxes now”, and felt I had to respond.

Foxes are not hunted for fun. Hunting with hounds was a way to reduce the fox population in the countryside.

To hunt foxes in other ways can result in a fox being injured and not killed – how cruel is that?

The fox has no predators and needs to be controlled in the countryside; hunting with hounds is an effective way of doing this.

The hounds flush out the foxes. The old and sick ones, being easier to catch, are instantly dispatched, and the fit, young ones often get away.

Using terriers and digging out foxes seems unfair, but is sometimes necessary if the fox is causing a real problem, killing chickens and young livestock.

The hounds are also “following their instinct”.

Christine Keller, Green Hammerton, York.

• IN answer to Bryan R Lawson (Letters, June 21), yes, I love foxes. But I also feel sorry for the parents and the children the fox attacked.

There has to be a reason for this attack or there would be more. But let’s get this in perspective. In the last 12 years there have been two fox attacks. In the last 12 years there have been about four children killed by the family’s pet dog, and hundreds of people bitten and savaged.

Also, Mr Lawson, your fox numbers are wrong.

There are about 225,000 rural foxes and about 33,000 urban foxes – about the same as it has always been.

What Mr Lawson wants to see is the Government reinstating foxhunting.

D Fillingham, The Crossway, Muncaster, York.