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Gray fox, Urocyon cinereoargenteus is common throughout USA and also in Tikal National Park, El Peten, Guatemala

Easy to see the gray fox at Tikal National Park

There are more YouTube videos on foxes of the Parque Nacional Tikal than for foxes in any other area of Guatemala. The most impressive one is a Part II and Part III of a boa constrictor who captures a fox, and another fox comes to the aid of the dying fox. I did not find Part I of the snake and foxes, but Part II and III were enough to bring tears to my eyes.

When you visit Tikal you can expect about a 50% chance of seeing grey foxes running freely across the Great Plaza or base of the North Acropolis. It helps if you stay several days to be sure you see them.

Urocyon cinereoargenteus grey fox Aurora zoo image 9810

The Gray fox, Urocyon cinereoargenteus, usually its a very nervous animal while being in the wild.

Gray fox is commonly seen at zoos

Usually the foxes are nervously pacing the cage, which is normally too small for them. But at the nice La Aurora Zoo (Guatemala City, near the airport) the foxes appear relaxed. Indeed the foxes were not even nervous when we entered their cage to do close-up photography.

I really enjoyed the opportunity to learn how the foxes literally “hang out” by hanging from the tree limbs. Since I was raised in the Ozark Mountain area of Missouri, I am used to seeing foxes running around on the ground. I did not realize that the gray fox was a creature of the trees until I saw this at the La Aurora Zoo.

Gray Foxes as Pets

It is not considered appropriate to capture wild foxes and keep them as pets. But if bred in captivity, I can understand the interest of having them to study. However it is much nicer to see the gray fox running around Tikal, totally free in its (almost) natural habitat. Frankly it is remarkable how quickly the gray fox gets used to all the tourists at Tikal.

Bibliography on the Gray Fox, Urocyon cinereoargenteus

Melany Soria of the FLAAR staff is preparing a bibliography on the gray fox of Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, and Honduras. We will post a link when this page is finished. Our bibliography web site is
www.maya-art-books.org.

 

First posted late August 2015

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