Pale Fox

Pale Fox

Kingdom
Phylum
Subphylum
Class
Order
Suborder
Family
Genus
SPECIES
Vulpes pallida
Population size
10-100 thou
Life Span
10 yrs
WEIGHT
2-3.6 kg
LENGTH
380-550 mm

The Pale fox is a small fox found in Africa. It is one of the least studied of all canid species, in part due to its remote habitat and its sandy coat that blends in well with the desert-like terrain. Its fur is quite thin, with a pale sandy color that turns white towards the abdomen. The back is often speckled with a blackish or a rufous coloration, with a darker mid-dorsal line. The flanks are paler than the dorsal pelage, blending into buffy-white underparts, and the legs are rufous. This fox has a pale face, an elongated muzzle with relatively long whiskers, and a dark ring surrounding the eye. Its tail is long and bushy, with a reddish-brown color with a prominent black tip and a dark patch above the tail gland. The ears are large compared to other foxes but are typical of a desert inhabiting canid.

Distribution

Pale foxes are occur in the semi-arid Sahelian region of Africa bordering the Sahara Desert, from Mauritania and Senegal via Nigeria, Cameroon and Chad to the Red Sea. They live in sandy or stony arid terrain, and occasionally venture south into the savanna. They may also move southwards and northwards in relation to the periodic droughts that affect these regions.

Pale Fox habitat map

Climate zones

Habits and Lifestyle

Pale foxes are primarily nocturnal. They are gregarious, living in shared burrows, probably in small family groups with parents and their young. During the day they rest in dug burrows that can extend up to 15 meters long and descend up to 2 meters to the ground. At dusk Pale foxes venture out and forage for food.

Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition

Pale foxes are omnivores. They feed on plants and berries as well as rodents, reptiles, and insects. They have the ability to retain water from their food and can go almost completely without drinking.

Mating Habits

PREGNANCY DURATION
51-53 days
BABY CARRYING
3-6 kits
FEMALE NAME
vixen
MALE NAME
reynard, tod
BABY NAME
kit, cub, pup

After the gestation period that lasts around 51-53 days, female Pale foxes give birth to 3-6 kits. The young are born altricial (helpless). They weigh 50-100 grams (1.7-3.8 ounces) and become weaned from their mothers between 6 and 8 weeks.

Population

Population threats

The Pale fox is not considered threatened at present, although it is sometimes hunted because it raids villages and takes poultry, and it is sometimes killed by vehicles at night.

Population number

According to the IUCN Red List, the total population size of the Pale fox is 10,000-99,999 mature individuals. Currently, this species is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List.

References

1. Pale Fox on Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pale_fox
2. Pale Fox on The IUCN Red List site - https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/23052/16813736

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