Blanford's fox

Blanford's fox (Vulpes cana), is a small fox found in certain regions of the Middle East and Central Asia.

Blanford's fox[1]
Blandford's fox 1
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Canidae
Genus: Vulpes
Species:
V. cana
Binomial name
Vulpes cana
(Blanford, 1877)
Vulpes cana (distribution)
Range of Blanford's fox
Synonyms
  • Vulpes nigricans Shitkow, 1907[3]

Naming

Blanford's fox is named after the English naturalist William Thomas Blanford, who described it in 1877. It is also known as the Afghan fox, royal fox, dog fox, hoary fox, steppe fox, black fox,[4] king fox[4] (شاه‌روباه shāhrūbāh in Persian), cliff fox[4] or Baluchistan fox.[4]

The specific name, cana, is Latin for "hoary" (so the scientific name means "hoary fox", corresponding to one of the vernacular names of the species). [5]

Distribution and habitat

Blanford's fox inhabits semiarid regions, steppes, and mountains of Afghanistan, Egypt (Sinai), Turkestan,[6] northeast Iran, southwest Pakistan, the West Bank, and Israel.[7] It may also live throughout Arabia (Oman, Yemen, and Jordan), as one was trapped in Dhofar, Oman in 1984. Recent camera trapping surveys have confirmed the presence of the species in several places in the mountains of South Sinai, Egypt[8] and the mountains of Ras Al Khaimah, UAE,[9] and in Saudi Arabia.[10]

Blanford's fox possesses hairless footpads and cat-like, curved, sharp claws described by some authors as semiretractile.[11][12]

This fox has an ability to climb rocks and make jumps described as "astonishing", jumping to ledges 3 m above them with ease and as part of their regular movements and climbing vertical, crumbling cliffs by a series of jumps up vertical sections.[13] The foxes use their sharp, curved claws and naked footpads for traction on narrow ledges and their long, bushy tails as a counterbalance.[13]

Appearance

Vulpes cana (Blanford´s fox) fur skin
Fur skin of Blanford´s fox

Like all desert foxes, the Blanford's fox has large ears which enables it to dissipate heat. However, unlike other desert foxes, it does not have pads covered with hair, which would otherwise protect its paws from hot sand. Its tail is almost equal in length to its body. Its coat is light tan, with white underparts and a black tip on the tail. Among all extant canids, only the fennec fox is smaller than Blanford's.[14]

Shoulder height: 12 in. (30 cm)

Head and body length: 17 in. (42 cm)[14]

Tail length: 12 in. (30 cm)[14]

Weight: 2–3.3 lb. (0.9–1.5 kg)[14]

Diet

Omnivorous, and more frugivorous than other foxes. It prefers seedless grapes, ripe melons and Russian chives when consuming domestic crops. In addition, it eats insects. The Biblical foxes in the vineyard mentioned in the Song of Songs 2:15, described as "little foxex who roun the vineyards" are most probably the frugivorous Blanford's foxes.

Reproduction

  • Time of mating: January–February.[6]
  • Gestation period: 50–55 days.[4]
  • Litter size: 2–4 kits.[4]
  • Lactation: 6–8 weeks days.[4]
  • Age at sexual maturity: 8–12 months.[4]
  • Longevity: Generally 4–5 years,[4] but reported to live up to 10 years.

Sustainability

While the IUCN has downgraded Blanford's fox to "least concern" as more has been learned about the breadth of its distribution across the Middle East, very little is known about this species and its vulnerabilities to the diseases of domesticated dogs that have so badly affected other canids. Currently, little competition exists with humans for habitat, and the fox is a protected species in Israel and protected from hunting in Oman and Yemen. Some fur hunting occurs in Afghanistan, and occasionally they may take poison intended for hyenas and other species.[2]

See also

References

  1. ^ Wozencraft, W.C. (2005). "Order Carnivora". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 532–628. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.
  2. ^ a b Geffen, E.; Hefner, R. & Wright, P. (2008). "Vulpes cana". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2010.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  3. ^ Don E. Wilson; DeeAnn M. Reeder (16 November 2005). Mammal species of the world: a taxonomic and geographic reference. 1. Smithsonian. p. 583. ISBN 978-1-56098-217-3.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Blanford's fox". Breeding Centre for Endangered Arabian Wildlife. 29 August 2007. Archived from the original on 4 March 2009. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  5. ^ "canus - Wiktionary".
  6. ^ a b "Blanford's fox Distribution". Breeding Centre for Endangered Arabian Wildlife. 13 May 2004. Archived from the original on 16 September 2008. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  7. ^ GBIF sighting records Archived 5 November 2015 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ El-Alqamy H., Wacher T. J., Hamada A. & Rashad, S. (2003). Camera Traps; A Non-invasive Sampling Technique to Redefine the Large Mammals Fauna of South Sinai. Full Book-2003, Cat Specialist Group-IUCN
  9. ^ Llewellyn-Smith, R.E. (2000). A short note on Blanford's fox Vulpes cana in the mountains of Ras Al Khaimah. Tribulus 10.1:23–24.
  10. ^ Cunningham & Wronski (2009). "Blanford's fox confirmed in the At-Tubaiq Protected Area (norther Saudi Arabia) and the Ibex Reserve (central Saudi Arabia)" (PDF). Canid News. IUCN/SSC Specialist Group (12.4). ISSN 1478-2677.
  11. ^ Sillero-Zubiri, Claudio; Hoffman, Michael; and MacDonald David W. Canids: Foxes, Wolves, Jackals, and Dogs: Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan. Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK: IUCN; 2004. p206
  12. ^ Geffen, E., Hefner, R., Macdonald, D.W. and Ucko, M. 1992d. Morphological adaptations and seasonal weight changes in the Blanford’s fox, Vulpes cana. Journal of Arid Environments 23:287–292.
  13. ^ a b IUCN/SSC Canid Specialist Group. Canids: Foxes, Wolves, Jackals, and Dogs – 2004 Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan Archived 30 October 2011 at the Wayback Machine. Cambridge: IUCN/SSC Canid Specialist Group, 2004. p. 197.
  14. ^ a b c d Burnie D and Wilson DE (eds.), Animal: The Definitive Visual Guide to the World's Wildlife. DK Adult (2005), ISBN 0789477645

Further reading

  • Abu Baker, M. A. et al., (2004). On the Current Status and Distribution of Blanford's fox, Vulpes cana Blanford, 1877, in Jordan (Mammalia: Carnivora: Canidae). Turk. J. Zool., 28: 1–6.
  • Geffen, E., R. Hefner, D. W. Macdonald & Ucko M. (1992). Habitat selection and home range in the Blanford's fox, Vulpes cana: compatibility with the Resource Dispersion Hypothesis. Oecologia 91: 75–81.
  • Geffen, E. (1994). Blanford's fox, Vulpes cana. Mammalian Species, 462:1–4.
  • Stuart, C.T. & Stuart, T. (1995). Canids in the southeastern Arabian Peninsula. Canid News 3:30–32.

External links

Alexander's kusimanse

Alexander's kusimanse (Crossarchus alexandri) is a genus of mongoose found in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda.This species has a body length of 30 to 45 centimeters (12 to 18 inches) and weighs between 0.45 and 1.4 kg (0.99 and 3.09 lb). Its tail measures 15 and 25 centimeters (5.9 and 9.8 inches) in length.

It is known to share range with the Angolan kusimanse (Crossarchus ansorgei). It feeds on grubs, small rodents, small reptiles, crabs, and some fruits. It can produce 2 to 3 litters (2 to 4 young per litter) of young each year after a gestation period of 8 weeks. The young wean at 3 weeks old and reach sexual maturity at 9 months old.

Arctocephalus

The genus Arctocephalus consists of fur seals. Arctocephalus translates to "bear head."

Asiatic linsang

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Cana (disambiguation)

Cana may refer to:

Cana, village mentioned in the Gospel of John as "Cana of Galilee", site of the Marriage at Cana

Marriage at Cana, Biblical event

Kafr Kanna, village in Israel often associated with the Marriage at Cana

Qana, village in Lebanon associated with the Marriage at Cana

The Wedding at Cana, painting by Italian artist Paolo Veronese

Kanah, a town and brook mentioned in the Book of Joshua in the Hebrew Bible

Cana, Yemen, ancient port city in Yemen, mainly a trading port of spices from India and Eastern coast of Africa

Čaňa, municipality in the Košice Region of eastern Slovakia

Cana, California, community in Butte County

Lorik Cana, Albanian footballer

Cana (length), unit of measurement

Cana Island, Island in Lake Michigan located near Baileys Harbor, WI

Cana, Roccalbegna, village in Grosseto, Tuscany, Italy

Cana (radiolarian), a genus

Cana, a species name

Vulpes Cana is the binomial name of Blanford's foxCANA may refer to:

CANA, African Swimming Confederation (Confédération Africaine de Natation)

CANA, United States military acronym for "Convulsive Antidote, Nerve Agent", the drug diazepam in injectable form

Convocation of Anglicans in North America

Canidae

The biological family Canidae

(from Latin, canis, “dog”) is a lineage of carnivorans that includes domestic dogs, wolves, coyotes, foxes, jackals, dingoes, and many other extant and extinct dog-like mammals. A member of this family is called a canid (, ).The cat-like feliforms and dog-like caniforms emerged within the Carnivoramorpha 43 million years before present. The caniforms included the fox-like genus Leptocyon whose various species existed from 34 million years ago (Mya) before branching 11.9 Mya into Vulpini (foxes) and Canini (canines).Canids are found on all continents except Antarctica, having arrived independently or accompanied human beings over extended periods of time. Canids vary in size from the 2-m-long (6 ft 7 in) gray wolf to the 24-cm-long (9.4 in) fennec fox. The body forms of canids are similar, typically having long muzzles, upright ears, teeth adapted for cracking bones and slicing flesh, long legs, and bushy tails. They are mostly social animals, living together in family units or small groups and behaving co-operatively. Typically, only the dominant pair in a group breeds, and a litter of young is reared annually in an underground den. Canids communicate by scent signals and vocalizations. They are very intelligent. One canid, the domestic dog, long ago entered into a partnership with humans and today remains one of the most widely kept domestic animals.

Crossarchus

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Fennec fox

The Fennec fox, or fennec (Vulpes zerda), is a small crepuscular fox found in the Sahara of North Africa, the Sinai Peninsula, South West Israel (Arava desert) and the Arabian desert. Its most distinctive feature is its unusually large ears, which also serve to dissipate heat. Its name comes from the Berber word (fanak), which means fox, and the species name zerda comes from the Greek word xeros which means dry, referring to the fox's habitat. The fennec is the smallest species of canid. Its coat, ears, and kidney functions have adapted to high-temperature, low-water, desert environments. Also, its hearing is sensitive enough to hear prey moving underground. It mainly eats insects, small mammals, and birds.

The fennec has a life span of up to 14 years in captivity. Its main predators are the African varieties of eagle owl, jackals, and other large mammals. Families of fennecs dig out dens in the sand for habitation and protection, which can be as large as 120 m2 (1,292 sq ft) and adjoin the dens of other families. Precise population figures are not known but are estimated from the frequency of sightings; these indicate that the animal is currently not threatened by extinction. Knowledge of social interactions is limited to information gathered from captive animals. The species is usually assigned to the genus Vulpes; however, this is debated due to differences between the fennec fox and other fox species. The fennec's fur is prized by the indigenous peoples of North Africa, and in some parts of the world, the animal is considered an exotic pet.

Ferret-badger

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Bornean ferret-badger (Melogale everetti)

Chinese ferret-badger (Melogale moschata)

Javan ferret-badger (Melogale orientalis)

Burmese ferret-badger (Melogale personata)

Vietnam ferret-badger (Melogale cucphuongensis)

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The giant forest genet (Genetta victoriae), also known as the giant genet, is a genet species endemic to the Congo Basin. As it is considered as widely distributed and common, it is listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List.

Lutrogale

Lutrogale is a genus of otters, with only one extant species—the smooth-coated otter.

Mountain fennec

The mountain fennec (Vulpes sp. nov.) is an unidentified local name of a fox reported by Dr Koen de Smet, announced from the mountains of the Central Sahara by the local Tuaregs. It is possibly conspecific with Blanford's fox. The mountain fennec may just be a Corsavach Swift fox with bigger ears.

Mustelinae

Mustelinae is a subfamily of family Mustelidae, which includes weasels, ferrets amd minks.It was formerly defined in a paraphyletic manner to also include wolverines, martens, and many other mustelids, to the exclusion of the otters (Lutrinae).

Nyctereutes

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Native to East Asia, the raccoon dog has been intensively bred for fur in Europe and especially in Russia during the twentieth century. Specimens have escaped or have been introduced to increase production and formed populations in Eastern Europe. It is currently expanding rapidly in the rest of Europe, where its presence is undesirable because it is considered to be a harmful and invasive species.

Paradoxurus

Paradoxurus is a genus within the viverrid family that was denominated and first described by Frédéric Cuvier in 1822. As of 2005, this genus was defined as comprising three species native to Southeast Asia:

the Asian palm civet (P. hermaphroditus)

the golden palm civet (P. zeylonensis)

the brown palm civet (P. jerdoni)In 2009, it was proposed to also include the golden wet-zone palm civet (P. aureus), the Sri Lankan brown palm civet (P. montanus) and the golden dry-zone palm civet (P. stenocephalus), which are endemic to Sri Lanka.

Patagonian weasel

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Vulpes

Vulpes is a genus of the Canidae. The members of this genus are colloquially referred to as true foxes, meaning they form a proper clade. The word "fox" occurs on the common names of species. True foxes are distinguished from members of the genus Canis, such as dogs, wolves, coyotes, and jackals, by their smaller size (5–11 kg) and flatter skulls. They have black, triangular markings between their eyes and noses, and the tips of their tails are often a different color from the rest of their pelts. The typical lifespan for this genus is between two and four years, but can reach up to a decade.For animals commonly known as "foxes", but which are not true foxes, see Fox#Classification.

Wildlife of Pakistan

The wildlife of Pakistan comprises a diverse flora and fauna in a wide range of habitats from sea level to high elevation areas in the mountains, including 177 mammal and 660 bird species. This diverse composition of the country's fauna is associated with its location in the transitional zone between two major zoogeographical regions, the Palearctic, and the Oriental.

Wildlife of the United Arab Emirates

The wildlife of the United Arab Emirates is the flora and fauna of this country on the eastern side of the Arabian Peninsula and the southern end of the Persian Gulf. The country offers a variety of habitats for wildlife including the coast, offshore islands, mangrove areas, mudflats, salt pans, sand and gravel plains, sand dunes, mountain slopes, wadis and rocky summits. Because the terrain is so varied, it supports a greater number of species of plants and animals than might have been expected in this relatively small country.

Extant Carnivora species

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