Q:

What are some facts about the kit fox?

A:

Quick Answer

Kit foxes are the smallest American Canids, with a maximum weight of about 6 pounds. They are mostly carnivorous, but will turn to plant foods, including fruits, when prey are scarce. They have a wide range in North America, mostly in the Southwest, but extending to the South and Pacific Northwest, and their populations are plentiful and stable throughout most of this range.

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Full Answer

Kit foxes typically dwell in arid environments, including desert scrub, chaparral and grasslands. They have very large ears for their body size, which serve the dual purposes of enhancing hearing and dissipating heat. They have yellowish or grey coloring, and blend well into their environment when hiding. They form lifelong monogamous pairs for breeding, although much of their time is spent in solitary hunting.

Kit foxes primarily hunt rodents and rabbits, but they will also eat large insects, reptiles and ground-dwelling birds. Their main competitors in many environments are the much larger coyotes; coyotes are also the main predators of kit foxes. Other predators include large birds of prey, bobcats, red foxes and American badgers. Their nocturnal lifestyles and cryptic coloration provide them with some protection against this predation. They prefer areas with loose soils so they can easily dig dens to live in during the day.

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