An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Red Foxes Giving Birth

3-22-17 red fox kit IMG_7433Red Fox vixens are giving birth to one to seven pups (usually three to five) in their underground dens at this time of year. The pictured pup is about four weeks old, and is starting to acquire its sand-colored coat. Red Fox pups are born with a temporary coat of dark grey-brown fur which we rarely see, as they stay in their den for the first month or so, where their mother provides warmth and milk.  At the age of four weeks or thereabouts, the pups begin to emerge from the den and sit, nap and play near its entrance. At that time they grow a second coat that is very close to the color of the sandy terrain in which their den is usually dug. Their red coat, for which they are named, develops later in the summer.

Although it’s too early to see Red Fox pups, keep an eye out for active dens which are easiest to find where there is still snow on the ground, as the dirt around the entrance is usually visible. Males can sometimes be seen going back and forth, delivering food to the vixen and her pups.

The next Naturally Curious post will be 3/24/17.

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3 responses

  1. Alice Pratt

    Such adorable babies. Great camouflage.

    March 22, 2017 at 7:53 am

  2. Too cute!

    March 22, 2017 at 6:13 pm

  3. A friend and I camped some years ago in a field beside the Sandy River downstream from Farmington, Maine, and were delighted to discover several pairs of ears sticking up from the stubble about forty yards away. Whenever we turned to look at them, they disappeared, and then popped up again a few moments later. We amused each other like that for about fourteen hours, till we finally set off again down the river.

    March 23, 2017 at 3:17 pm

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