Grade 9 Geography
The Arctic Fox, also known as the Snow Fox, Polar Fox or its latin name Alopex lagopus, is a small omnivore, it eats both plants and animals. It can be found throughout the Arctic tundra, in Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Russia, Norway, Scandinavia, and even Iceland. The Arctic Foxes as a species are close to being endangered from global warming, see 7.0 for more details.
Image: 1.1 Arctic Fox in the Snow.
The Arctic Fox’s diet consists mostly of lemmings and voles, small rodents that live under the snow, but they have also been know to eat berries, bird eggs and scavenge from the kills of larger predators such as Polar Bear
Image: 2.1 Two Arctic Foxes Following a Polar Bear
The population size of Arctic Foxes depends on the amount of food available to them, therefore the Arctic Fox population generally depends on the amount of their staple food source, lemmings.
Image: 3.1 A Lemming Coming Out of it’s Burrow.
Arctic Foxes have greatly adapted their behaviour to fit into the arctic environment, something interesting about Arctic Foxes is how they hunt; they have excellent hearing so they can locate lemmings and voles burrowing under the snow. Once they have found their prey, they leap into the air, and pounce right through the snow layer, and onto the rodent. In the winter, if food is scarce, Arctic Foxes will follow polar bears out onto the ice and scavenge what is left of their kills.
Image: 4.1 Arctic Fox hunting.
Arctic Fox offspring are called pups. Arctic Fox litters regularly consist of 59 pups although larger litters are not uncommon. Both male and female Arctic Foxes mate for life, meaning they both take care of the pups.
Image 5.1: Family of Foxes
Why are they Important? 6.0
Arctic Foxes are important because they keep the lemming and vole population down as well as some plants. Without Arctic Foxes the Lemming population