Red Fox
Vulpes vulpes

CLASS: Mammalia
ORDER: Carnivora
FAMILY: Canidae

SIZE:
36-48 inches total length; tail 12-17 inches. Weight 12-19 pounds.

RANGE:
Artic Circle to Mexican border; possibly introduced from Europe.

HABITAT:
Open farmlands, woodlands, brushy country bordering on marshes and swamps, treeless mountain slopes, and even suburban areas.

DIET:

  • Wild - Omnivorous; rodents, rabbits, birds and eggs, small reptiles, insects, fruits and berries, carrion. Feeds more heavily on small animals during winter months.
  • Zoo - Dry dog food and carnivore diet.

DESCRIPTION:
Reddish with blackish hairs above, white underneath; feet, legs, and ears black; tail with wide black band and white tip. Black and other color phases occur and are raised for the fur trade.

FACTS:

  • Graceful, gliding effortlessly; walks on toes; can spurt to 26 mph.
  • Develops a lush winter coat, wrapping in tail for extra warmth.
  • Can produce a strong skunky smell.
  • Males yelp, females yap.
  • Enemies include bobcats, coyotes, wolves, dogs, bears, golden eagles. Hunted by man for fur.
  • Digs long tunnels with many exits.

YOUNG:
Gestation period 50-53 days; average four to six kits born in a tunnel; they are blind for the first 10 days. Female stays with young; the male bringing her food. Kits wean at 8 to 10 weeks.

STATUS:
Not threatened; often considered a pest to gardens and poultry.

REFERENCE:
G. H. Lowry, Jr. 1974. The Mammals of Louisiana and Its Adjacent Waters.