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Incredible Artic Fox Travels 2178 Miles in 76 Days From Norway To Canada

Screenshot from Arctic fox travels 3000km from Norway to Canada in 76 days - TomoNews. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: Tomo News US

Scientists were in disbelief, and impressed, when they discovered that this female arctic fox traveled over ice glaziers from Norway to Canada (2178 miles!) in just 76 days. The longest and fastest journey ever recorded for this species! 

Research

Screenshot from Arctic fox journeys from Norway to Canada. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: CBC News

In March 2018, researchers from the Norwegian Polar Institute fitted a young Arctic fox with a tracking device before setting her off to do her thing. And she looks adorable! 

21 Days In 

Screenshot from Arctic fox journeys from Norway to Canada. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: CBC News

She set off from Spitsbergen, Norway, and started her long trek she reached Greenland in just 21 days! From there she made her way to Canada. 

Speedy

Screenshot from Arctic fox journeys from Norway to Canada. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: CBC News

The Arctic fox completed her journey of 2178 miles in just 76 days! The researches say that she covered an average of 28.7 miles per day, that’s more than a marathon each day! 

Longest Day

Screenshot from Arctic fox travels 3000km from Norway to Canada in 76 days – TomoNews. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: Tomo News US

On one exceptional day, the fox traveled 96 miles! However, it must be clarified that she traveled over sea ice, meaning that she floated some of the distance. But still, very impressive! 

Watch the full video here

Speechless

Artic fox
Arctic fox (Vulpes lagopus) in winter pelage on the snow, Iceland. Image via Jonathen Pie https://unsplash.com/@r3dmax, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

The researchers said that they were speechless when looking at the data transmitted back from her tracking device. They have never seen a fox migrate so far, or so fast before and even thought that her collar might have been removed and put on a boat at one stage! 

What Boat?

arctic fox
Arctic Fox. Image via Depositphotos

Even though they speculated that her collar had been placed on a boat, they were proven wrong! No boats were in the area at the time, meaning that this impressive fox deserves all the credit. 

No Stopping

arctic fox
Image via Unsplash

During her 76-day journey, she only slowed down on two occasions. It is thought that she might have waited out some bad weather, or she could have found a source of food that made her pause her journey. 

Current Whereabouts 

arctic fox
An arctic fox fox yawning in the cold weather. Image via Depositphotos

The Polar Institute reported that her tracking device stopped working in February 2019 and that her current whereabouts are unknown. 

Watch the full video here

Adapting 

arctic fox
Arctic Fox Image via Unsplash

With her impressive journey under her belt, researchers say that the arctic fox will have to adapt her diet to her new territory. In Norway, arctic foxes mostly live on a marine-based diet, and those in Canada live mostly on lemmings. 

Sea Ice In Fox Migration

Screenshot from Arctic fox journeys from Norway to Canada. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: CBC News

This fox’s journey shed light on the important role of sea ice in their migration, as she used it to get from Norway to Canada. And they aren’t the only animals that rely on sea ice during their travels. 

Global Warming

arctic fox
Image via Unsplash

Due to global warming, the Arctic is heating up causing a melting of sea ice which impacts Arctic foxes. Researchers speculate that the population in Svalbard might be completely isolated in the future due to this. 

Silver Lining 

Screenshot from Arctic fox travels 3000km from Norway to Canada in 76 days – TomoNews. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: Tomo News US

The one silver lining to the higher temperatures in the Arctic is that this means more Svalbard Reindeer are in the area. This means that there is more food for Arctic foxes, as they scavenge off of these reindeer’s carcasses. 

Migration 

arctic fox
Image via Unsplash

Arctic foxes migrate seasonally due to a couple of reasons. One is the availability of food, an another is their breeding patterns. They often return to the same place to breed each year, leading to their migration efforts! 

Coats

Screenshot from Arctic fox travels 3000km from Norway to Canada in 76 days – TomoNews. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: Tomo News US

Did you know that arctic foxes’ coats change color with the seasons? During winter months when they are living in snow, their coats are white which easily blends with their environment. 

Arctic Fox Conservation 

Image by Musicaline, CC BY-SA 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Arctic fox has been classified as a species of least concern on the IUCN Red List since 2004. However, the population on the Scandinavian mainland is critically endangered, despite having been legally protected from hunting and persecution for several decades. The estimated adult population across Norway, Sweden, and Finland is fewer than 200 individuals.

The Video

Screenshot from Arctic fox journeys from Norway to Canada. Source: Youtube, Uploaded: CBC News

Watch the full video here

Incredible Ms. Fox

arctic fox
Image by Photo by David J. Stang, CC BY-SA 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Not only was this journey impressive due to the speed and distance she covered, but she also traveled on sea ice and over glaziers. Impressing researchers around the world! Her incredible journey also shed light on the issues that animals face due to global warming, and that we as humans should do our best to reduce our carbon footprint. 

Next In Animal News

Arctic fox
Image by Photograph by Rama, Wikimedia Commons, Cc-by-sa-2.0-fr, CC BY-SA 2.0 FR https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/fr/deed.en, via Wikimedia Commons

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