Living in some of the most frigid conditions on earth, the hardy Arctic fox can survive polar temperatures of minus 58 degrees Fahrenheit, sometimes tunneling into the snow for shelter. The fox’s fur turns from brown to pure white in winter to serve as camouflage in the snow. It feeds on small animals by pouncing on its prey and punching through the snow to catch its meal. When prey is scarce, the fox follows the Arctic’s foremost predator, the polar bear, to scavenge for leftovers.
Though the Arctic fox is extremely clever and resourceful, it too is feeling the squeeze of global warming. Throughout the Arctic, warming temperatures are allowing red foxes to expand their range into the Arctic fox’s territory. The larger and more aggressive red foxes have a competitive advantage over their snow-colored cousins, contributing to significant Arctic fox declines in many northern areas.
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