Home Range and Activity Patterns of Red Foxes in Nadgee Nature Reserve.
M Phillips and PC Catling
18(6) 677 - 686
Three adult red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) in a 20-km2 wilderness area of coastal south-eastern Australia were studied during pre-denning and denning. Home ranges were defined by geographic featues, but not by roads. The foxes occupied exclusive home ranges, and observations suggest that they were territorial and existed alone or, at most, in mated pairs. Home-range sizes were small (1.2-5.2 km2) compared with those in North America and Europe, but similar to those in England and Wales. During denning the female's activity became almost entirely diurnal. When not active, the vixen was with the cubs. Male activity during denning was nocturnal, but, as found for the female, inactive periods were spent near the suspected den-site in his home range. Habitats that were frequented most by all foxes were those with the highest abundance of either small or medium-sized mammals. Dry sclerophyll forest was used consistently by all foxes but heathland and the beaches were rarely frequented. Small and medium-sized mammals, which were abundant in all habitats except the beach and heathland, made up 52.6% of items in the scats.
Full text doi:10.1071/WR9910677
© CSIRO 1991