Friday, September 9, 2011

Crab Eating Fox

Cerdocyon thous
The Crab Eating Fox is a pretty interesting critter when you look at its taxonomy. Its scientific name is Cerdocyon thous, which means it is not a member of the fox genus, Vulpes. In fact, it isn't even a member of Vulpini, the Fox Tribe. They are actually members of Canini, which makes a common name a little perplexing, doesn't it? 

Crab Eating Foxes are common throughout their range, and there are five recognized subspecies. Their omnivorous and opportunistic feeding style helps them to adapt to all kinds of habitats, from forests, to savannas, to wetlands.

As you can probably guess, Crab Eating Foxes eat.. crabs, and other things too. They hunt for the crustaceans on floodplains during the wet season, and during that time of year they make up a large portion of the Fox's diet. During drier times they consume more insects, but also rodents and reptiles as well.

Crab Eating Foxes are monogamous, and live in pairs year round. They often breed twice per year. Like other Canines, the young are born helpless with their eyes and ears closed. Both parents guard the pups and bring them food once they are in the weaning process.

IUCN Status : Least Concern
Location : South America
Size : Weight up to 16lbs (7.2kg), Body length 25in (63cm)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Mammalia -- Order : Carnivora
Family : Canidae -- Genus : Cerdocyon -- Species : C. thous

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