Consider cutting down the huge pines that are beginning to uproot.
The foxes will leave soon enough and the pines will still be your original problem until something is done with those. Put all the money towards the huge pines instead. Then the secondary problem foxes will no longer be any problem of yours to worry about.
Let me help clarify the situation a bit better.
I forgot sarcasm doesn't translate well online. The shooting comment was a joke.
I live on less than a quarter acre so their den takes up half the backyard. The den is only ten yards from back porch. We have let them be until now because they have been cute and fun to watch. I noticed the damage was getting worse to the yard etc, but I wanted the pups to grow up before doing something, to give them a better chance wherever they end up.
We brought out an arborist to check on the trees and we were told that the den is starting to uproot and go under two tall pine trees. If they were to fall they would likely fall on my house. And these trees are big would do catastrophic damage. Not ideal and hence why I reached out for help.
I have also called a wildlife consultant who quoted us an outrageous price.
I have been unable to find anything about disturbing dens to be illegal, so if someone happens to have that handy, let me know.
Does this arborist also take down the trees and remove them? Be a good reason to convince you that the trees were getting uprooted. I see them as making a den and that is it. It is not like they are going in the den and continuously mining around in there. For what it is worth my parents have a white pine, been leaning severely for 15 years, top died out about 7 years ago. It is still standing just as it was.
If you have small children, find a way to get rid of them. You do not want anyone in your family to get bit by one. They are cute and fun to look at, but they are carriers of rabies. Very rare, but they can carry.
Arborist was not associated with tree company. So no motive to chop down the trees. The trees would cost thousands of dollars to do he said. No easy access.
Spoke with DNR on phone today. They said that clause only applies to public land. I can get a permit to trap the foxes or call a specialist to do it. He mentioned if they were becoming annoying or if I had kids, that I should out cayenne pepper in their den. That would make them leave, I believe someone suggested that. He also said I could wait a few weeks and they would likely leave as they are close to maturaty.
27-1-30. Disturbing or destroying wildlife habitats
Except as otherwise provided by law or regulation, it shall be unlawful to disturb, mutilate, or destroy the dens, holes, or homes of any wildlife; to blind wildlife with lights; or to use explosives, chemicals, electrical or mechanical devices, or smokers of any kind in order to drive such wildlife out of such habitats, provided that this Code section shall not apply to poisonous snakes.
Plus If you do this at this point the fox will still be there just without a den.
They usually don't keep digging on their dens. I would leave them be as they are more afraid of you than you are of them. Once the pups are big enough they'll move on. Enjoy the opportunity to observe wildlife up close. At the rate we humans are destroying their habitat you soon won't have many more opportunities to do so.