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Westside Digest

Playa del Rey : Another Dispute Over Foxes

August 20, 1992

Animal rights activists who have been seeking a place to relocate about 15 red foxes that live in the Ballona Wetlands have found an educational wildlife facility in Texas willing to take the animals, but a Texas official said the state cannot grant a permit to allow the foxes into the state.

Wild Animal Orphans, an educational facility in San Antonio, has offered to take the foxes, which would otherwise be trapped and destroyed because they are preying on other wildlife in the wetlands, including several endangered bird species.

But officials at Maguire Thomas Partners, the development firm that is preparing to restore the wetlands as a wildlife preserve as part of its agreement to build the large Playa Vista development nearby, said they have been advised by Texas wildlife officials that the foxes cannot be brought into the state.

Company officials said they were told that Texas fish and game regulations stipulate that fur-bearing animals can be brought into the state only by a licensed fur facility or to be slaughtered for their pelts.

Animal rights activists, however, said they will continue to fight for permission to take the foxes to Texas. Trapping of the animals by a private contractor has been suspended since last month while the search proceeds.

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