Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Furry Backyard Visitor

It's a sunny cold day here, and it appears that this backyard visitor has found a nice spot in which to relax for a bit . . . a playscape in a neighbor's backyard.

This is a gray fox, a small mammal considered to be in the wild dog family. Both coyotes and foxes are very common in Texas, and it's not uncommon to see these creatures in urban areas near greenbelts. One can assume from the coloring why this is called a gray fox. Their coats are mostly gray with a little cinnamon colored fur along the sides, neck, and legs. Their belly's are white.

According to Wikipedia, canidae is the family of wolves, foxes, jackals, coyotes, and dogs. These mammals eat both small animals and fruits and berries. This gray fox may be napping here, but these agile creatures are known to be good climbers and can climb up and down trees. The gray fox is the only one in the canidae family with the ability to climb trees.

A young fox is called a cub, kit, or pup. The female is called a vixen and the male a reynard, todd, or dog. I've no idea if this is a vixen or a reynard, but I do think this critter has sensed being watched. So let's leave it alone and go on over to Susan's @ A Southern Daydreamer to see what others are sharing today for Outdoor Wednesday.

Hope you'll take time to leave me a comment below. It will make my day!

The photos were taken by a neighbor in his yard. Thank you, Michael, for allowing me to share these amazing photos.
I found the facts on the gray fox on The Web Site of Everything.com. Click here if you want to read more about the gray fox.