Kit Fox

Jeff Foott/DCI |

The color of the kit fox, also known as the swift fox, varies according to region.

Nocturnal carnivores, kit foxes prey on rodents, rabbits, hares, and sometimes ground-nesting birds and reptiles.

During the day, they shelter in burrows, which may have up to twenty-four entrances. Each burrow is typically occupied by a single fox.

Cubs are born blind and helpless, and the mother rarely leaves the den while nursing. During this time, the male hunts and provides food and nourishment for the nursing female.

At about one month, the cubs are sufficiently developed to venture outside to romp, play, and begin learning to hunt for themselves.

Animal Facts

Name: Kit Fox (Vulpes velox)

Family: Canidae (Dogs and Relatives)

Range: Southwestern Canada and western United States into north central Mexico

Habitat: Prairie and semi-arid regions

Diet: Small mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, insects, berries, grasses and seeds

Head and Body Length: 15 to 20 inches (37.5 to 50 cm)

Tail Length: 8 to 13 inches (22.5 to 32.5 cm)

Shoulder Height: 10 to 12 inches (25 to 30 cm)

Weight: 3 to 7 pounds (1.5 to 3 kg)

Life Cycle: Mating December to February; gestation 49 to 56 days, four or five cubs born

Description: Gray-brown coat; buff orange underneath; dark patches on muzzle; large ears; bushy, black-tipped tail

Conservation Status: Lower Risk (Conservation Dependent)

Major Threat: Habitat loss; hunting

What Can I Do?: Visit the Defender's of Wildlife for information on how you can help.