Arctic Fox

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Wikipedia.

Arctic Fox


(Alopex lagopus), a predatory mammal of the family Canidae. The body is 50 to 75 cm long and weighs from 6 to 10 kg. The fluffy tail reaches 40 cm in length. The muzzle is short and pointed, and the ears are small and rounded. The paws are short, and the soles are covered by coarse hairs. The fur is thick and fluffy. There are two color phases: the white form, which is pure white in winter and grayish brown in summer, and the blue form, which is smoky gray in both summer and winter.

The arctic fox is found in the tundra and forest tundra of Eurasia and North America. In the USSR it is nearly ubiquitous on the continental tundra and forest tundra, as well as on offshore islands. Blue foxes dwell on the Komandorskie Islands and are rarely encountered on the mainland. During the winter, large numbers of arctic foxes migrate from the tundra to the forest tundra or the northern coastal regions.

Arctic foxes live in families in dens. Less commonly, they dwell among rock outcrops or in tree trunks washed up by the sea. The animals feed on such rodents as lemmings and voles, on birds and their eggs, on carrion, and on berries. Mating occurs in February or March. After a gestation period of 49 to 57 days, the female gives birth to a litter of seven to 12 pups.

The arctic fox population fluctuates sharply from year to year. The foxes are extremely valuable commercially, serving as the basis for fur trade in the north. Because its fur is particularly valuable, the blue fox is also raised on special farms. On fur farms in the USSR, two varieties of blue fox are raised: foxes with dark gray underfur, and foxes with light gray, nearly white underfur. Farms raising the first variety may be found in the northern and temperate latitudes of America, Europe, and Asia. Natural pelts are used to make boas, collars, and hats. The fur from the paws is used in the manufacture of coats.


Mlekopitaiushchie Sovetskogo Soiuza, vol. 2, part 1. Edited by V. G. Geptner and N. P. Naumov. Moscow, 1967.


References in periodicals archive ?
In addition to the arctic fox, the team also uncovered extinct species of a wooly rhino, three-toed horse, Tibetan bharal (also known as blue sheep), chiru (Tibetan antelope), snow leopard, badger, as well as 23 other mammals.
Emelia Sherman, 13, was confident in her shoe, which was modeled after an arctic fox and polar bear.
Without a strong online presence, Arctic Fox Cooling, Inc could be missing out on nearly 9 out of 10 potential customers looking for services like boiler repairs, heat pumps, and air conditioning installation.
The scientists used cage traps that do not hurt the foxes to catch members of eight Arctic fox families.
Journey with four polar denizens--polar bear, Arctic fox, Adelie penguin and wandering albatross--through seasonal changes in this companion to a BBC television series.
An elegant Arctic fox makes a non-too delicate meal out of a guillemot that's mis-timed its landing and a leopard seal makes mincemeat of a stray penguin.
Photos are accompanied by descriptions of polar bear physical characteristics, behavior, preferred environment, and informatin on other animals from the region such as seals, muskoxen, tern, beluga whales, walruses, and arctic fox.
The gray wolf, trout, salmon, arctic fox, desert bighorn sheep, desert tortoise, Edith's checkerspot butterfly, golden toad, Hawaiian monk seal, lobster, manatee, painted turtle, penguin, streamside salamander and western toad are just a few of the species on Defenders' list that are negatively impacted by our profligate fossil fuel use.
Arctic fox (Alopex lagopus) and other predators specialize in feeding on primary prey, lemmings (Dicrostonyx spp.
Handmade from reclaimed fur - that's fur that has been hanging neglected in someone's wardrobe, and includes arctic fox, mink, coyote and bear - they are just the ticket for these icy winters.
Readers are also introduced to the North American Arctic fox, grey fox and swift fox.

Full browser ?