Animalia > Chordata > Mammalia > Carnivora > Canidae > Vulpes > Vulpes zerda

Vulpes zerda (Fennec Fox; fennec)

Synonyms: Canis zerda

Wikipedia Abstract

The fennec fox or fennec (Vulpes zerda) is a small nocturnal fox found in the Sahara of North Africa. Its most distinctive feature is its unusually large ears, which also serve to dissipate heat. Its name comes from the Arabic word فنك (fanak), which means fox, and the species name zerda comes from the Greek word xeros which means dry, referring to the fox's habitat. The fennec is the smallest species of canid. Its coat, ears, and kidney functions have adapted to high-temperature, low-water, desert environments. In addition, its hearing is sensitive enough to hear prey moving underground. It mainly eats insects, small mammals, and birds.
View Wikipedia Record: Vulpes zerda

EDGE Analysis

Uniqueness Scale: Similiar (0) 
 Unique (100)
Uniqueness & Vulnerability Scale: Similiar & Secure (0) 
 Unique & Vulnerable (100)
ED Score: 4.62
EDGE Score: 1.73


Adult Weight [1]  2.76 lbs (1.25 kg)
Birth Weight [1]  26 grams
Female Maturity [1]  9 months 4 days
Male Maturity [1]  9 months 4 days
Diet [2]  Carnivore (Invertebrates), Carnivore (Vertebrates), Herbivore
Diet - Ectothermic [2]  10 %
Diet - Endothermic [2]  30 %
Diet - Invertibrates [2]  20 %
Diet - Plants [2]  30 %
Diet - Vertibrates [2]  10 %
Forages - Ground [2]  100 %
Gestation [1]  51 days
Litter Size [1]  2
Litters / Year [1]  1
Maximum Longevity [1]  16 years
Nocturnal [3]  Yes
Weaning [1]  66 days


Name Countries Ecozone Biome Species Report Climate Land
Arabian Desert and East Sahero-Arabian xeric shrublands Saudi Arabia, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Egypt , Iraq, Jordan, Syria Palearctic Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
North Saharan steppe and woodlands Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania Palearctic Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
Red Sea Nubo-Sindian tropical desert and semi-desert Egypt, Jordan, Saudia Arabia, Yemen, Oman Palearctic Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
Sahara desert Egypt, Sudan, Libya, Algeria, Mauritania, Mali, Chad, Niger Palearctic Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
Saharan halophytics Egypt, Tunisia, Algeria, Mauritania, Western Sahara Palearctic Flooded Grasslands and Savannas
South Saharan steppe and woodlands Mauritania, Mali, Algeria, Niger, Chad, Sudan Palearctic Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
Tibesti-Jebel Uweinat montane xeric woodlands Chad, Libya Palearctic Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
West Saharan montane xeric woodlands Algeria, Niger, Mali, Mauritania Palearctic Deserts and Xeric Shrublands

Protected Areas

Name IUCN Category Area acres Location Species Website Climate Land Use
Banc d'Arguin National Park II 2949017 Mauritania
Dana Wildlife Reserve IV   Jordan  

Emblem of


Prey / Diet

Jaculus jaculus (Lesser Egyptian jerboa)[4]

Prey / Diet Overlap

Competing SpeciesCommon Prey Count
Athene noctua (Little Owl)1


Hyaena hyaena (Striped Hyena)[4]


Parasitized by 
Ctenocephalides felis felis[5]
Ctenocephalides felis strongylus[5]
Linognathus fenneci[6]
Nosopsyllus henleyi henleyi[5]
Pulex irritans (human flea)[5]
Stenoponia tripectinata acmaea[5]
Synosternus cleopatrae cleopatrae[5]
Synosternus pallidus[5]
Trichuris cyrenaica <Unverified Name>[7]
Xenopsylla cheopis (oriental rat flea)[5]
Xenopsylla nubica[5]

Institutions (Zoos, etc.)

Institution Infraspecies / Breed 
Adelaide Zoo
Africa Alive!
Al Ain Zoo
Al Bustan Zoological Center
Albuquerque Biological Park
Amazon World
America's Teaching Zoo
Artis Zoo
Attica Zoological Park S.A.
Binder Park Zoo
Binghamton Zoo at Ross Park
Bronx Children's Zoo
Bronx Zoo/Wildlife Conservat'n Society
Budapest Zool.& Botanical Garden
Capron Park Zoo
Chessington World of Adventures, Ltd.
Chicago Zoological Park
Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden
Cleveland Metroparks Zoo
Colchester Zoo
Columbian Park Zoo
Columbus Zoo and Aquarium
Drusillas Zoo Park
Forest Park Zoological Society
Fresno Chaffee Zoo
Giza Zoological Garden
Hai Park Kiriat Motzkin
Haifa Zoo & Biological Institute
Happy Hollow Zoo
Honolulu Zoo
IAE - African Safari Wildlife Park
Inokashira Park Zoo
Johannesburg Zoological Gardens
Kaliningrad Zoo
Kittenberger Zoo
Lietuvos Zoologijos Sodas
Lincoln Park Zoological Gardens
Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens
Maktoum Wildlife Centre
Miejski Ogrod Zoologiczny w Lodz
Miejski Ogrod Zoologiczny Wybrzeza
Milwaukee County Zoological Gardens
Minnesota Zoological Garden
Mogo Zoo P/L
Nagoya Higashiyama Zoo
Niabi Zoo
Nikolaev Zoo of Nikolaev-City Council
Novosibirsk Zoological Park
Olmense Zoo
Palm Beach Zoo at Dreher Park
Parc Merveilleux
Parc Zoologique d'Amneville
Parc Zoologique de la Barben
Parc Zoologique de La Palmyre
Parco Zoo Punta Verde
Park i Ogrod Zoologiczny w Krakowie
Phoenix Zoo
Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium
Prospect Park Zoo
Racine Zoological Gardens
Rare Species Conservation Centre
Reid Park Zoo
Riga Zoo
Rosamond Gifford Zoo at Burnet Park
Safari West
Saint Louis Zoological Park
Saitama Children's Zoo
San Diego Zoo
Six Flags Discovery Kingdom
Societa Zoologica Di Pistoia S.R.L
South Lakes Wild Animal Park
Southwest Wildlife Conservation Center
STB Kanta - Friguia Zoo
Taronga Zoo
The Living Desert Zoo and Gardens
Valley Zoo & John Janzen Nature Center
Virginia Zoological Park
Wildlife World Zoo
Wilhelma Zoo
Wroclaw Zoo, LLC
Zagreb Zoo / Zooloski vrt Zagreb
Zoo de Jurques
Zoo de La Fleche
Zoo Dvur Kralove, a.s.
Zoo Landau in der Pfalz
Zoological Center Tel Aviv - Ramat Gan
Zoological Garden Prague
Zoologicka zahrada Olomouc
Zoologischer Garten Augsburg GmbH
Zoologischer Garten Frankfurt
Zoopark Zajezd o.p.s.

Range Map

Africa; Europe & Northern Asia (excluding China);



Attributes / relations provided by
1de Magalhaes, J. P., and Costa, J. (2009) A database of vertebrate longevity records and their relation to other life-history traits. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 22(8):1770-1774
2Hamish Wilman, Jonathan Belmaker, Jennifer Simpson, Carolina de la Rosa, Marcelo M. Rivadeneira, and Walter Jetz. 2014. EltonTraits 1.0: Species-level foraging attributes of the world's birds and mammals. Ecology 95:2027
3Myers, P., R. Espinosa, C. S. Parr, T. Jones, G. S. Hammond, and T. A. Dewey. 2006. The Animal Diversity Web (online). Accessed February 01, 2010 at
47.4 Fennec fox, Vulpes zerda, C.S. Asa, C. Valdespino and F. Cuzin, Sillero-Zubiri, C., Hoffmann, M. and Macdonald, D.W. (eds). 2004. Canids: Foxes, Wolves, Jackals and Dogs. Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan. IUCN/SSC Canid Specialist Group. Gland, Switzerland and Cambridge, UK. x + 430 pp.
5International Flea Database
6Jorrit H. Poelen, James D. Simons and Chris J. Mungall. (2014). Global Biotic Interactions: An open infrastructure to share and analyze species-interaction datasets. Ecological Informatics.
7Gibson, D. I., Bray, R. A., & Harris, E. A. (Compilers) (2005). Host-Parasite Database of the Natural History Museum, London
Ecoregions provided by World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF). WildFinder: Online database of species distributions, ver. 01.06 WWF WildFINDER
Images provided by Google Image Search
Abstract provided by DBpedia licensed under a Creative Commons License
Weather provided by NOAA METAR Data Access