A lucky sighting of a red fox
We saw this red fox in Yellowstone National Park in June of this year. This is the Rocky Mountain subspecies, Vulpes vulpes macroura.
The red fox is not seen often in the park because they are nocturnal and they blend into their preferred habitats along the edges of meadows and forests. The females nurse their kits during late spring and this may have been a female out looking for food. Foxes usually use dens created by other animals.
We were fortunate to see a female with kits on another spring visit to Yellowstone. Litter size averages four to eight kits. Vixens gives birth in late March to April. Both parents care for the young through their first few months of their life.
When wolves were introduced into the park, many coyotes were eliminated by the wolves and this may have caused an increase in the number of foxes. Coyotes prefer sagebrush and open meadow habitat and hunt more by day so they don’t compete as much with foxes.
The red fox is the smallest dog-like mammal in the park. The males weigh 11-12 pounds and the females weigh 10 pounds. They average 43 inches in length. Most foxes live 3-7 years but in Yellowstone can live up to 11 years.
Foxes can have a wide variety of coat colors–from red to black. Their thick tail aids in balance and they use them to signal to other foxes. Foxes wrap their tail around themselves in cold weather to help them stay warm.
Red foxes have a varied diet. They feed on voles, mice, rabbits, birds, amphibians, eggs, carrion, and some plants. Animals that prey on foxes include cougars, wolves, and coyotes.
Video of a flying red fox
Here’s a National Geographic video of a fox hunting in the winter. They have extremely good hearing and listen for animals beneath the snow. When they sense prey, they pounce or “fly” to catch it under the snow. Flying Red Fox
Lens-artists Photo Challenge – Action
14 thoughts on “Red fox in action: Lens-artists challenge”
Great shots and interesting to see your red foxes – they do not look like ours. Ours are much more compact and really red in colour. Never this light.
Thanks! Yes, others I have seen have been much redder.
Maybe they are shedding hair in periods?
That could be since it was springtime.
Very nice shots! 🙂 Beautiful creatures! They are red and very elusive in our area. 3 to 7 years is not a long time!
Thanks! The ones I have seen in Washington and Oregon were redder too. Maybe these were in the process of shedding their winter coats.
Wow, you were very fortunate to have camera in hand as they appeared. Such an elusive creature. Excellent choice
Thank you! My camera was always within reach in Yellowstone. 😁
Great images, such a gift to see these foxes. I have seen a few around here over the years and am always struck by their color. The video is amazing. The fox jumping straight up like that reminded me of a diver taking off from a diving board and doing a jack knife!
You’re lucky to have seen them. Yeah, they do look like they’re diving!
Terrific images of a most interesting creature!
Thanks! I was surprised to learn they weigh the same as my cat. Small but efficient hunters.
Great to see them in the wild. 🙂 🙂
Yes, it is!