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Arctic Fox.jpg

The Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus), also known as the white fox, polar fox, or snow fox, is superbly adapted for life at sub-zero temperatures. While this species is best known for its pristine, white winter coat, during the summer, the coat becomes brown on the upperparts, with light grey or white underpart, and is half as thick. In addition, to the ‘white’ form of Arctic fox, a ‘blue’ form also occurs, which in some areas is light brown with a bluish sheen in the winter or dark brown to black in other areas, but becoming chocolate brown in the summer. The dense, woolly coat of this species has the best insulative properties of all mammals, and helps this species survive at temperatures of -50 degrees Celsius in the wild, and up to -80 degrees Celsius during captive tests. Some other adaptations for life in the Arctic include small, heavily furred ears and a short nose to reduce heat loss, as well as fur on the soles of the feet, giving the name in latin “hare foot”, and increased blood flow to the feet pads to prevent freezing.



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