Kit Fox

The Kit Fox is the smallest species of fox in North America. Despite their slender size, they have large ears to help aid their hearing and dissipate heat. These nocturnal animals find shelter in dens to avoid the heat of the day and instead hunt at night. Kit Foxes mate for life and have intricate family situations where kits from previous years often stay with the family and help with the new pups.
SCIENTIFIC NAME
Vulpes macrotis
CLASSIFICATION
Mammal
LIFE SPAN
5-7 Years
SIZE
12-20 ” | 4-5 lbs
STATE CONSERVATION STATUS
  • State Protected
FEDERAL CONSERVATION STATUS
Least Concern
GAME STATUS
Game
GAME TYPE
Furbearer
  1. Washoe
  2. Humboldt
  3. Pershing
  4. Churchill
  5. Mineral
  6. Lyon
  7. Douglas
  8. Carson City
  9. Storey
  1. Elko
  2. Lander
  3. Eureka
  4. White Pine
  1. Esmeralda
  2. Nye
  3. Lincoln
  4. Clark

Habitat & Range

Kit Foxes can be found in the southwestern United states and into central Mexico. In Nevada, they live in the Mojave Desert where there are flat, arid lands with abundant bushes and desert scrub.

  • Cold desert shrubland and sagebrush
  • Grasslands
  • Mojave desert

Threats

  • Habitat Degradation
  • Habitat Loss
  • Predation

Natural History

Kit Foxes are primarily carnivorous, eating rodents, rabbits, carrion and sometimes fruits. If open water is unavailable, they can absorb sufficient water from the animals and plants in their diet. Their intricate dens are used for protection against predators and weather, as well as a place to raise their young, called “pups.” In September and October, the female will prepare a natal den, where the male will meet the female. Pair bonds last at least one breeding season. After birth, parents bring food to the dens for the pups. The pups emerge from the dens when they are about five weeks old then forage alongside the parents once they reach four months.

Fun Facts

Kit Foxes rarely drink water since they get all the water and electrolyte they need from their diet. They also have a digestive tract that is super-efficient at absorbing every last milliliter of water from the food they eat.