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What are some facts about red foxes?

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Quick Answer

Red foxes are omnivorous mammals that live around the world in diverse habitats such as forests, grasslands, mountains and deserts. Foxes are solitary animals, but during the winter breeding season, they court and mate. The male fox stays with the female through the early spring, providing food for the family. Red foxes use their iconic bushy tails for balance, a warm cover in cold weather and to communicate with other foxes.

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Full Answer

When red fox cubs are born, their eyes and ears remain closed until they are two weeks old. A red fox litter is typically two to 12 cubs. Cubs emerge from the den four weeks after they are born, but many die to predators, cold weather and collisions with motor vehicles.

The diet of a red fox consists of rabbits, birds, fruit, vegetables and worms. Foxes can eat most small game and have flexible diets; they eat garbage and pet food if they can find it. Night hunting comes naturally for red foxes because their eyes have adapted night vision. Behind the light-sensitive eye cells is another layer called the tapetum lucidum, which reflects light back through the eye. This is why a fox's eyes appear to glow green if a light hits them at night.

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