What does a fox look like?
A fox looks different. The size and coloration of the common fox depends on the area in which it lives. The largest individuals are found in northern areas, while small ones are common in southern areas. Also in the north and in the mountains, foxes of the black-brown color are often found (black-brown fox). In total, there are 12 species belonging to the genus of foxes, including such an animal as a fox (polar fox). By the way, the smallest member of the fox genus is the fenek.
The common fox is the most common species of the genus foxes. In total, there are about 50 subspecies of this animal. The only species that can compete with the red-haired rascal in such diversity is the common wolf, which has about 40 subspecies. Curiously, there is a species of wolf, which looks very similar to the fox, but is not her close relative, namely - mane wolf.
The fox appears to be a medium-sized animal, it is slender, flexible and agile. The fox has short thin paws, a long fluffy tail, an elongated muzzle with sharp ears and a graceful torso. The weight of the animal ranges from 6 to 10 kilograms, with a body length of 60-90 cm. The tail length varies from 40 to 60 cm.
The most common color of the red fox is red, but individuals of brown and yellowish color are also common. The fox looks bright, with a red back, white belly, dark paws and ears, and a tail with a white tip.
The fox looks different depending on the time of year. In late winter or early spring, the animal begins the molting process, at which time the fox's fur becomes short and sparse. By the middle of summer molting stops and from that moment the fox begins to grow winter fur, which reaches its maximum at the end of autumn or the beginning of winter. In winter, the fox looks fluffy and its coat is at its most lush and long.
Where does the fox live and how?
The fox lives covering a fairly wide area, but with varying population densities. The fox lives in the tundra, forests, mountains, steppes and deserts. At the same time, the animal can be found not only in the wild, but also in urban environments, most often in suburbs and dumps.
The fox lives in Europe, North Africa, most of Asia, North America and even Australia. Due to such a wide distribution and different climatic conditions, the fox animal has such a variety of colors and sizes.
The fox lives in open terrain, choosing areas with small groves and overgrown forests.
Most often, the fox lives in the forest-steppe and steppe zones, settling on hillsides and ravines, in places where snow cover is loose and not deep in winter, and the ground is not flooded by rain, meltwater and groundwater. It is in such areas that most foxes live.
The life of the fox is not simple, many factors influence the number of this animal, so the number of red foxes fluctuates every year. It all depends on climatic conditions, availability of food, and infectious diseases of the population. In hungry years, foxes have a lower number of offspring and also create favorable conditions for the spread of various infectious diseases such as rabies, plague and scabies. In southern Europe, foxes are even specially vaccinated to avoid rabies outbreaks in the region.
In the wild, foxes live no more than 7 years, with an average life span of only 3 years. But in captivity, the red-haired beauty can live up to 20 years. The fox lives sedentary, occupying an area with suitable places for burrowing and enough food.
It is not uncommon for foxes to live in pairs or as a family. Foxes are capable of digging burrows on their own, but most often occupy empty burrows of other animals, especially badgers.
In addition, foxes can also take advantage of natural shelters such as tree hollows, caves, and crevices in rocks.
In nature, the fox uses the same permanent shelter only during the rearing of cubs, changing shelter only when urgently needed. The rest of the time, the common fox prefers to spend in the open, resting directly on the grass or in the snow.
In case of danger and persecution, it has several spare shelters on its territory and hides in them at any time of the year. When the animal is frightened, it runs at lightning speed and so fast that its body extends completely above the ground. At a time when the red fox feels safe, it walks very calmly, leaving a clear trail behind it.
The fox is a predatory animal, so it sees better in the dark than in daylight and responds well to movement. The fox lives more active at night, but it can be seen quite often during the day.
The fox is an animal that has a well-developed sense of smell and hearing, so it's almost impossible to get close to it undetected. A predatory fox immediately picks up the slightest sound vibrations and smells.