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Foxes

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Offline campochick

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« on: January 27, 2007, 11:25 AM »
Hi everyone, great to have a forum up and running. A few questions for you all. I live in the Campo just outside Almogia, since I came here 2 and a half years ago I have only seen 1 fox up until today. I have seen a male and female, mating, one makes a clicking noise the other a bark. Do foxes generaly stay in the same area ? If there has only been 1 fox here that I have noticed, and now there are 2 where has the other one come from, could they have followed a female scent ? How many pups can we expect to see and when ? The area around me is mountainous, where would their den be ? I am new to all this but it has given me such pleasure seeing these animals in their own environment instead of in a zoo. We also have a myriad of birds here as well, some nest in my porch. Any info will be appreciated. Thanks

Campochick
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Simon

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« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2007, 06:04 AM »
Hi,

You're right, it is good to have a forum.

Foxes have thier cubs in early Spring, but that can vary acording to the region, altitude, etc. As they stay in the earth for about a month that's rather an academic question, however, so I'd wait until around June before expecting to see any.

As you wander around the counrtyside, look out for their droppings, they are usually very conspicuously placesd on tree stumps, tussucks, etc. for marking territory. the earths themselves are said to be rather messy with the remains of the last week's dinner lying around, but at least in most parts of Spain there are plenty of carrion birds to clean up!

I always see male foxes going solo, but I'm not sure whether they remain with the vixen to rear the cubs, I don't think so.

Simon

Offline campochick

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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2007, 08:54 AM »
Thanks for the info Simon,
Check out www.casagalesa.com a Beautiful 1 Bedroom Cottage that sleeps up to 4 people. Set in a quiet rural location surrounded by Carob,Olive,Almond,Fig trees and wild Lavender  a truly chill out place to be. We also have 2 Double rooms on a B@B basis in our main home.

Offline nick

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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2007, 13:02 PM »
I think probably in Southern Spain, you woud see cubs a month earlier.

I can't say I know much about foxes, but I've done a bit of reading.

Foxes are usually, but not always, solitary animals with overlapping male and female territories, which they tend to stick to for life.
Breeding groups are either monogamous or one dog fox and a couple of vixens. Most of the cub care is done by females, but males will sometimes lend a hand.
Young foxes, like most carnivores disperse in search of a new patch

There's some good info here

http://faunaiberica.org/especies.php3?esp=49

And this BBC page notes:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/nature/animals/features/329feature1.shtml
Fox in the city
There are two deeply entrenched views about the sex life of foxes. Naturalists and scientists have maintained that the fox is monogamous and a devoted father, whereas foxhunters and country people believe that foxes are promiscuous, and that the male plays no role in rearing his cubs. But at last modern technology is helping unravel the complexity of the fox's sex life.

Vixens shriek in the breeding season to attract dog foxes. In Bristol we have had up to 10 adults living on one territory and there are normally equal numbers of both sexes. So the vixen may have several dog foxes in her social group, and group members meet several times a night, albeit briefly. Since all the dog foxes in the social group will know when the vixen is ready to mate, why all the shrieking? My colleagues and I used modern genetic techniques to identify the parents of each cub born on our long-term study area in the north-west of the city. The results were a revelation: if you are a dominant female, only a quarter of your cubs are sired by males that live in your social group; the majority are fathered by males from other social groups. Individual litters of cubs can have up to four different fathers.




Cheers
Nick
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Offline campochick

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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2007, 16:37 PM »
cheers nick
Check out www.casagalesa.com a Beautiful 1 Bedroom Cottage that sleeps up to 4 people. Set in a quiet rural location surrounded by Carob,Olive,Almond,Fig trees and wild Lavender  a truly chill out place to be. We also have 2 Double rooms on a B@B basis in our main home.

Offline nick

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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2007, 17:02 PM »
Not sure if I've got the "overlapping male and female territories" right.
There seems to be a big variety in the social structure of foxes.


By the way, and off the topic

*The surname of that hugely dislikable last president of Spain, is a derivation originally from Basque for fox

zorro m.

(Zool.) azeri, azeri arrunt, luki (Vulpes vulpes) http://www1.euskadi.net/hizt_3000/



*And there's a huge array of local names in Spain for fox

http://www.iberianature.com/material/badgerwords.htm

Nick
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Offline nick

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« Reply #6 on: January 31, 2007, 20:31 PM »
Right, been talking to someone

The important thing about foxes is food availability.

Where there's a lot,as in some cities, they can form veritable male-female packs of some numbers, with both helping out on the rearing young.

In areas with less food, which is the norm, males might hold sway over a territory with 2-3 females, Each will have their own territories.

And in others areas, perhaps with less food still or pehaps due to local "fox culture", one vixen and one dog will hold one territory

Nick
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2007, 11:43 AM »
Greetings All,
Retomando (En. anyone?) this very interesting but strangely abandoned thread, I'd like to see if anyone has an answer to Simon's question elsewhere 'bout whether foxes can turn their scent glands on and off at will, i.e. when they're not interested in marking territory 'cos they're hunting and/or fleeing.

(Passing ref. only: does anyone know whether in Dave's L-O-G the pack hunted by scent or by sight? Or does the smell of sheer, blood-curdling fear linger longer in the air?)

Regs.
Techopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
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Simon

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« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2007, 16:24 PM »
I think the issue when foxes, or deer for that matter, is different, as at least in fox hunting the hounds are set upon the known wherabouts of the foxes and then once the chase begins adrenalin, which is pretty smelly stuff, does much of the rest (although the hounds will look for the whiff of fox having been trained with numerous corpses since 'cubbing'.

I don't imagine the foxes can "switch the scent offf" just that unless they actively rub thier scent glands on something like a twig perhaps they're just not that smelly!

Bow wow

Simon

Offline lucy

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« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2007, 23:21 PM »
Saw a fox yesterday evening in Collserola.  It was among some trees scanning a field that’s recently been full of rabbits, and didn’t notice it was being watched until it came out on the path.  Even then it went on its way without any rush.  What struck me was its colour: it was quite dark, brown-black rather than red. Is this usual?

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2007, 23:35 PM »
Greetings Lucy,
Don't know if you've already seen the stuff 'bout foxes elsewhere on the iberianature forum , but Dave also pointed out that difference.
However, the last fox I saw clearly, and only some ten yards away, March/April in Asturias, was definitely skinnier than the foxes back 'ome, but its coat was a lovely reddish-light brown. Could it have anything to do with region, age, sub-species?
Regs.
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
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Offline lucy

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« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2007, 00:12 AM »
Thanks Technopat, I'd missed that thread.  Mine was a skinny individual too.  Other Spanish foxes I've seen, both in the Pyrenees and down south in Jaen, have been russet.  Maybe it's a regional thing.  I see that Nick saw a near-black fox in Montseny, which is not very far from Collserola.

Offline Technopat

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« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2007, 00:26 AM »
Many thanx for that "russet", Lucy!
Thank Darwin I'm going back to the LOG this week for an intensive immersion course in English as she is spoke.
Regs.
Technopat :dancing:
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Offline SueMac

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« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2007, 09:34 AM »
Hi all
Last night one of our foxes barked for about half an hour or more just after dusk.  The ones here are thick furred darkish brown . Amazing bush tails.
Interesting behaviour recently of poohing on the top rock by the swimming pool.  Whose territory is whose?
SueMac
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2007, 09:53 AM »
Greetings SueMac and All,
Lucky you!
Have always been fascinated by foxes' tails being so bushy - surely it's poorly adapted to the sort of terrain they inhabit (the squirrel's tail, which is equally splendid, is used to help him/her/it balanced while zapping along at a rate of knots and even flying through the air).
Any thoughts?
Regs.
Technopat
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Offline SueMac

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« Reply #15 on: July 17, 2007, 10:09 AM »
Hi TP
Foxes do almost fly - I think they are so agile and can get up on in off through amazing places. Then of course they wrap themselves in it when its cold.....not "scientific" but I wonder if it is a rudder,
SueMac
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #16 on: July 17, 2007, 10:20 AM »
Greetings All,
I know that some of this has been covered elsewhere, but just for the record:

Quote
Fox is a general term applied to any one of roughly 27 species of small to medium-sized omnivorous canids in the tribe vulpini with sharp features and a brush-like tail. By far the most common species of fox is the Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) ...
You can read more at  Wikipedia

What in the LOG is generically called fox is in fact the
red fox, as described in the following Wikipedia article:

Quote
The Red Fox is most commonly a rusty red, with white underbelly, black ear tips and legs, and a bushy tail with a distinctive white tip. The "red" tone can vary from crimson to golden, and in fact can be brindled or agouti, with bands of red, brown, black and white on each individual hair when seen close up.

In the wild, two other color phases are also seen. The first is silver or black, comprising 10% of the wild population and most of the farmed. Approximately 30% of wild individuals have additional black patterning, which usually manifests as a stripe across the shoulders and down the center of the back. This pattern forms a "cross" over the shoulders, hence the term "cross fox". "Domesticated" or farmed stock may be almost any color, including spotted, or "marbled", varieties.

Right, still not sure 'bout the tail though - though I do like SueMac's unscientific explanation of it being ideal for wrapping itself up in.

Regs.
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
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Offline SueMac

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« Reply #17 on: July 17, 2007, 10:38 AM »
Quick search says may be not so unscientific:

http://www.enature.com/flashcard/show_flash_card.asp?recordNumber=MA0021
SueMac
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Offline Technopat

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« Reply #18 on: July 17, 2007, 10:59 AM »
Greetings SueMac,
Thanx for that - nice summary. You knew 'bout the tail wrap all along ...  :technodevil:
Regs.
Technopat
Technopat's disclaimer: If this posting seems over the top and/or gets your goat (Sp. anyone?), please accept my apologies and don't take it personally - it's just my instinctive tendency to put my foot in it whenever/wherever possible. See also:
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Offline SueMac

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« Reply #19 on: July 17, 2007, 13:57 PM »
I had seen pictures of arctic foxes so it must have lodged in the old cabeza but I didnt know that males lived in the open as a matter of routine.
SueMac
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