Arctic fox facts and figuresLength : 21-22 inches / 53-55 cm
Weight : 8.75 pounds / 4 kilograms
Social Unit : Group
Location : N.Canada, Alaska, Greenland, N.Europe, N.Asia
Status : Common
The Arctic fox comes in two color 'shades'. Foxes which are pure white during the winter to help them camouflage in snow and ice for protection from predators and to assist in sneaking up on prey. These pure white phase foxes are associated with open, treeless plains and grassy hillocks of the tundra biome. Foxes that are of the 'blue' color phase are to be found in areas of coastal regions and habitats supporting more shrubbery. These foxes are pale gray-brown with tinges of blue during winter.
Where do Arctic foxes live ?
What do Arctic foxes eat ?
Arctic foxes eat a large variety of food including lemmings, birds, eggs, crabs fish, insects, whale carcasses, fruits, seeds and even human refuse when available.
Social group and breeding
Their social groups consists of male-female pairings, larger groups of non breeding foxes and sometimes a breeding pair with what is known as helper females. Their homes, or dens, are large with a complex system of tunnels providing shelter from the extreme weather conditions and protection from predators as well as comfortable area for couples to raise their families.
Arctic fox reproduction cycles are closely tied to the availability of food. When food is in abundance,such as a readily available population of their favorite lemmings, then a litter of 15 cubs is not unusual. During the summer months, the coat of an Arctic fox changes dramatically - becoming half as thick as their winter coats. The color of the coat of white-phase foxes changes to a gray-brown while the coat of blue-phase foxes switches to a darker brown color.
What are some Arctic fox adaptations ?
One of the distinguishes features of Arctic foxes that is evident when looked at side by side to their cousins in the farmland and forest areas is that their muzzle, ears, legs and tail are shorter. This shortening of their features works as a heat loss prevention strategy. By exposing less surface area to the extreme cold conditions that Arctic foxes find themselves in they are able to conserve body heat and use less energy.