Arctic fox

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Arctic fox
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Canidae
Genus: Vulpes
Species: V. lagopus
Binomial name
Vulpes lagopus
(Linnaeus, 1758) [1]
Arctic fox range
Synonyms
  • Alopex lagopus (Linnaeus, 1758)
  • Canis lagopus Linnaeus, 1758
  • Canis fuliginosus Bechstein, 1799
  • Canis groenlandicus Bechstein, 1799
  • Vulpes arctica Oken, 1816
  • Vulpes hallensis Merriam, 1900
  • Vulpes pribilofensis Merriam, 1903
  • Vulpes beringensis Merriam, 1903

The Arctic Fox, (also called the White Fox, Polar Fox or Snow Fox), is a small fox. It lives in the Arctic (North Pole). The Arctic Fox is about 10-12 inches high (25–30 cm) and it weighs from 6 to 10 pounds (2.7-4.5 kg). The Arctic Fox has a round body shape, short nose and legs, and short, fluffy ears. It has the thickest fur of any animal in the world. In winter its fur is white to look like the snow and in the summer months it changes to brown. Arctic Foxes live for about 3 to 6 years. Its fur changes color with the seasons.

This fox can live in the cold north even when it is -50°C. Their thick fur keeps them warm. Its broad, fluffy paws let it walk on ice and snow to look for food. The Arctic Fox has very good ears so that it can hear small animals under the snow. When it hears an animal under the snow, it jumps and punches through the snow to catch its victim. The Arctic Fox eats any meat it can find. They eat lemmings, arctic hares, eggs and dead bodies of animals. The foxes also eat plants sometimes.

It takes 53 days for the pups to grow in the mother before they are born. The mother can produce 5-8 cubs but sometimes as many as 25. Both the mother and the father help to raise their young pups. The young females leave the family and form their own groups and the males stay with the family. Arctic Foxes form pairs in the breeding season. Litters are born in the early summer. The parents raise the young in a large den under the ground. The pups are born with brown fur and as they grow older it turns white.

References[change | change source]