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Takhini Burn’s Red Fox


Version française de ce texte.

Today, I thought I’d introduce the red fox that was roaming the Takhini Burn rest area during our second visit. On our way to Haines, Alaska, we decided to stop at the rest area to check up on the progress of the boreal chickadees’ nest.

As we got out of the car, a red fox was prowling around the observation platform in search of food. Our arrival did not scare it and it kept on searching giving us time to take out our cameras and tripods. The beautiful beast even decided to pose for us for a few moments before slowly heading towards the forest.

Red Fox at the Takhini Burn, Alaska Highway

Red fox

During my stay, I saw 4 or 5 red foxes. Except for this one, all were black, a fact which is not unusual. Here is an extract from the Hinterland Who’s Who website:

Although “red fox” is the accepted common name for the species, not all members of the species are actually red. There are several common colour variations, two or more of which may occur within a single litter. The basic, and most common, colour is red in a variety of shades, with a faint darker red line running along the back and forming a cross from shoulder to shoulder on the saddle. Individuals commonly exhibit some or all of the following markings: black paws, black behind the ears, a faint black muzzle, white or light undersides and throat, a white tail tip, and white stockings.

Other common colours are brown and black. Red foxes that are browner and darker than most of their species and have a cross on the saddle that is dark and prominent are sometimes referred to as “cross foxes.” Red foxes that are basically black with white-tipped guard hairs in varied amounts are known colloquially as “silver foxes.” Silver foxes are particularly valued by the fur trade, and large numbers were selectively bred in captivity when fox fur clothing was popular.

Sizes vary somewhat between individuals and geographic locations—those in the north tend to be bigger. Adult foxes weigh between 3.6 and 6.8 kg and range in length from 90 to 112 cm, of which about one-third is tail.

Red foxes can be found in all Canadian provinces and territories. Its territory continues to grow and it can even be found on some of the High Arctic islands such as Baffin or Ellesmere where it comes in direct competition with the arctic fox.

Have a great weekend!

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