Friday, January 29, 2021

Fox Foto Friday - Island Foxes Healthy Inside and Out


While we're all stuck at home, the word from the islands is that island foxes are thriving. Across the Channel Islands biologists are reporting healthy looking individuals and a fair number of pups.

2020 was a normal rain year with a hot summer. Populations may have adjusted down from the record highs of 2019, but that is to be expected. The rains across the islands this week, will help increase resources for island foxes throughout 2021. What do island foxes eat?

During 2020 health checks, island foxes on Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa, San Miguel, San Clemente, and San Nicolas joined their cousins on Santa Catalina by being swabbed for their microbiome. Samples have arrived at the lab for DNA analysis. Find out more about Dr. DeCandia's island fox microbiome research.

To survive into the future, island foxes need to be healthy inside and out. That's why FIF is helping investigate the biodiversity in the microbes and bacteria on their skin and throughout their bodies.