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FUR-FARMING IN CANADA   37

eat himself, and some grass, minnows, mice, crickets and berries besides.

The flesh diet of foxes is horse meat, calves, butcher scraps

Meat   (livers, hearts, heads, etc.), fish (both cured and fresh),

Diet rabbits, groundhogs, mice, rats, birds, squirrels, lobster bodies and old cattle and sheep. The flesh is usually fed raw, but some feeders parboil it. It is salted slightly when parboiled, only a small amount of salt being used. Frequently carcasses are salted down in casks, and, when required for food, a portion is freshened by placing it in running water for a day or two. Some of the finest foxes seen were fed with this kind of food and seemed to be in very thrifty condition, possibly because of being free from worms. Some ranches have cold storage plants, and keep the meat packed with ice. No storage houses similar to bait-freezers are used as yet, but the bait-freezer at Rustico, P.E.I., might serve as a model for such a house. Neither has any mechanical refrigeration of any kind been attempted.

Old cattle and horses are kept on the hoof and slaughtered from time to time as required. As foxes have been known to die of tuberculosis, these should be subjected to the tuberculin test or, at least, examined for tubercules after killing. The amount of meat fed should be about one-fourth pound a day and this amount should decreased if any of it is buried by the fox.

The non-flesh food consists of biscuits, yeast bread, hoe Non-flesh bread, vegetables, porridge, grass, berries, apples, milk and

Diet

eggs. Patent dog biscuits are fed with good results, one

ranch using only Spratt's biscuits, with milk and water, as food. The best ordinary biscuit is the plain hardtack. It is probable that hard-baked non-yeast bread is better than leavened bread. Bread is more relished if grease drippings are poured upon it. Tallow has been used with good success as a butter on hoe bread.

 

 

Any rations are liable to fail unless the food is served properly. The dishes should be frequently scalded and scrubbed and kept scrupulously clean. The water vessel should be fastened to the fence with wire hooks so that the foxes cannot climb over it. The food must be withheld when foxes are observed to bury or hide it. In frosty weather in April or May, frozen meat would kill the young foxes, so it is necessary to feed it warm or parboiled in such weather. If one fox dominates the other and takes too large a share of the food, a large quantity must be supplied at night and removed when both have had enough, e.g., a cow's head may be left in a pen for several days to furnish the flesh diet.


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