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Dromvulp

During the ice age accompanied change from Holocene to Neocene, wide areas of woods had disappeared, given up the place to grassy plains. It promoted prosperity of plain species and transition of some wood predators to life in plains. The destiny of the European fox (Vulpes vulpes) in particular was such. This clever solitary predator had developed new habitats, rich in animals of small and medium size. As against lions, hyenas, hunting dogs and wolves hunting in Holocene plains, the grass fox is the solitary: hunting for rather small animals does not require the organized actions in pack. Grass fox is the long-legged running predator, similar by constitution to the cheetah and manned wolf - single running predators of Holocene plains. It has long legs - growth of this animal at a shoulder is up to 1 meter, length of a trunk is almost same. Claws are blunt, non-involving, their function is to improve cohesion with the ground during the run. The animal can accelerate momentum up to 80 - 90 kms per hour at the distance up to 50 meters or to pursue catch with speed 25 - 30 kms per hour within many hours. Head of this animal is small, on rather long and flexible neck, jaws are lengthened, canines are slightly jutting out from the closed mouth. Ears of the fox are large: at an animal there is keen hearing, that is important for the hunting in high and thick grass, in conditions of bad visibility. Besides large auricles improve the heat emission. A tail of the grass fox is thin - it does not prevent to pursue catch. The body is covered with short wool, to an autumn and winter cold spell the wool becomes thicker and covers even an external surface of auricles. Color of the wool is yellowish - grey with slight vertical strips across body and legs. Chin, throat, chest and the tip of a tail are white. Auricles are dark from within and light from outside: it allows an animal to distinguish neighbours and at the same time does not give away the predator to possible catch. The grass fox eats basically any animals no more than 10 kg weight, which it can prey - rodents, other herbivores, birds and reptiles. Sometimes it can hunt large running herbivores. The predator catches prey pursuing it at the short distance, or chasing up to exhaustion by long pursuing. Sometimes the animal fishes in shallow water and gathers sea animals cast ashore by storms. It breeds in the spring-and-summer period, giving birth in favorable, rich in food years up to 2 packs of 5 - 6 puppies. The lair is made in rich bush thickets, near to it animal does not hunt. Newborn cubs are blind and spotty. With age spots merge to vertical strips and turn pale. At the age of 1 month cubs start to leave the lair, in 3 months they start to accompany mother during the hunting. The young growth keeps near to mother the first half-year, training in hunting receptions. Animals become adult in 2 years (males a little bit later than females).

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