Even though it may sound unpleasant, the droppings and scats of different kinds of animals can give a lot of information about them. If foxes are common in your area, the scats that are found in your garden can tell you if they are the ones that roam in your territory.
Foxes are nocturnal animals, meaning that they mostly come out at night. Before actually seeing them, you can guess that they visited you by the poop they left behind. Finding fox poop on the property is a signal that they hunt nearby. Even though they will not hurt humans, you need to watch out for your pets. However, to figure out if they are the ones that visit you, you must know what does fox poop look like.
The Eating Habits of Foxes
To find out what does fox poop look like, the first thing that needs to be done is to explore eating habits. Foxes are omnivorous eaters and have a pretty diverse diet. They eat plants as much as meat. They are opportunistic and will eat whatever they encounter. The easiest foods for them to get are fruits, vegetables, and berries. Mostly, in the summer months, the diet is rich in plants. However, during the winter, they focus mainly on eating meat because of the abundant vegetation.
The average fox kills prey twice a week. So, the main food source still remains to be planted. Foxes hunt mainly rats, hamsters, birds, poultry, rabbits, and insects. Therefore, you can determine what does fox poop look like based on their eating habits.
What Does Fox Poop Look Like?
Because of the nocturnal nature of foxes, humans rarely encounter them. They usually only leave the scats, carcasses, and broken twigs behind. Mammal animals’ poop can be easy to identify because it is relatively different from each other. Birds’ scats can look the same, so it is harder to find out which species it belongs to.
Before finding out what does fox poop look like, let’s begin with the terms that are often used to refer to fox poop. Mostly, it is called scat, feces, latrine, or droppings. Fox poop is approximately 2 inches long and it normally contains hair, bones, fruit and berry seeds, and small insects. It is twisted at the ends. The droppings can be different from each other, and it depends on the fox type and diet that they eat.
Foxes do not bury their scats, unlike many other mammals. The best way to recognize fox poop is by its “foxy” smell. It actually has a horrible smell, and if you accidentally stepped on it or your dog rolled in it, it is very hard to remove the smell. The easiest way to get rid of it is to use an odor eliminator. This substance removes the stains and bacteria. For the result, you can simply spray it on the surface.
Foxes are omnivorous eaters, meaning that they consume plants and animals. The scouts can show perfectly what they have been eating recently. Mostly, the color of fox poop is white, and it is because the foxes eat light-colored animals. Well, foxes are known to eat the fur of their prey too. Most of the small animals that they hunt have light fur. Therefore, the fox poop is mostly white.
New fox poop has a wet and smooth surface, and when it dries it becomes more rugged and light. The color varies and mostly depends on the food that they eat. It can be white, tan, or dark brown. Urban foxes have lighter scats and their poop can be similar to dogs’. Most of the time, the traces of the food that foxes have eaten can be found in their scats. Most parts of food are not digested entirely.
Average Fox Poop
It is hard to tell exactly what does fox poop look like. There are 37 species of fox in the world. However, only 12 of them are “True Foxes.” Their living environments and diets are different, and it all affects what does fox poop look like. However, we can explore the characteristics of the average fox’s scat.
Red foxes are the most widespread species of foxes. So, mainly, their characteristics apply to others. Their scat is approximately two inches long and has a diameter of half an inch. Foxes are very territorial creatures, and it is normal for them to mark their territory. For this purpose, they normally leave the scats on the rocks, tree logs, or stumps.
The scat is skinny and has a pointy end. This particular species of fox has scats that consist of insects, berries, seeds, hair, and bones. The unique way of digesting food for foxes is that the hair that they consume while eating the animals wraps around the pieces of bones and protects the stool and stomach.
The Fennec fox is the smallest of all species, and its main habitat is desert areas. The foxes have a total weight of a maximum of 3 pounds. Therefore, their poop is smaller than regular foxes’. It is somewhat similar to rabbit droppings. Because the main diet is rodents and insects, the concentration of insects in the scats is higher.
How To Differentiate The Fox’s Poop From Other Animals’
Foxes mainly live along with other animals such as rabbits, deer, bears, coyotes, and mountain lions. To identify which animal the scats belong to, you must know what does fox poop look like and how it is different from that of other animals.
Fox poop has the shape of dog poop, but it is more pointy at one end. The main difference is the content. Depending on the diet, the fox’s scats mainly consist of fur, feathers, berries, fruit seeds, and bones. Fruits and plants mainly are not part of the dog’s diet.
Rabbits and fox scats are actually pretty different from each other. Rabbit scats are mostly small and round drops, while foxes have longer and thicker scats. Rabbits normally drop them one at a time while they move around. The scat of rabbits is dark in color, while foxes have more light brown colored poop. If there are several droppings of rabbits, it means that the area is the main feeding ground.
Badger poop is frequently confused with fox scat. Those two have a very similar, very stinky smell. However, unlike foxes, badgers dig the holes and defecate in them.
Bear drops are larger in size and can be up to 2 inches. The differentiation between bear and fox scat is visible. Even though both are omnivores and have mainly the same diet, the bear scavengers are more scattered in summer.
Hedgehog scat has a sausage shape and is black and shiny. It mainly consists of pips from the berries and fruit that they eat, and on rare occasions, insects. Unlike the fox, the hedgehog’s scat is tapered on one end and curved at the other.
Just like foxes, raccoon scat has a tubular shape and can be as long as three inches. However, the habits of raccoons are different. They do not leave the droppings around randomly. Instead, they have a common space where many raccoons defecate.
Coyotes are much larger in comparison to foxes. Therefore, their scat can be a little bigger. Coyote scat is up to four inches long and mainly consists of animal hair, bones, and vegetable seeds. They are kind of similar to the content of fox scats. The main difference is the size.
Snake poop is brownish in color and has a strong odor. It is mostly covered in urea. It can be more similar to bird poop than fox scat. Snakes are carnivores. Snake droppings do not contain fruit seeds or plants.
Fox Poop Can Be Toxic
Fox poop can be toxic. That’s one of the reasons why you should know what does fox poop look like. Therefore, if you decide to learn about the foxes around you, you must be careful. It may contain parasites that can lead to serious infections such as toxocariasis. If the soil contains the fox scats, it can be transmitted from there too. So, make sure to wear gloves and masks when examining the scat. Even the inhalation of the smell can lead to disease.
A disease such as echinococcosis can be spread from the scat, which is harmful to both humans and dogs. Disease spreads through close contact, mostly with the scat that contains tapeworm eggs. In humans, it can cause cysts that grow in the liver and lungs. The dogs can get infections with direct contact with fox scat and infect the gastrointestinal tracts.
Tracking wildlife and learning about them can be done by their droppings, and it is an age-old method of identifying the animals that live nearby. Do you think that foxes have been visiting your garden lately, or maybe you just want to learn about the animals that live nearby? Well, if you know what does fox poop look like, you will be able to tell the fox’s territory pretty well.
To find out exactly what you need, all you need is the knowledge of what does fox poop look like, a careful eye, and a pair of disposable gloves.
Nato is a content writer and researcher with a background in psychology who’s eager to explore the wonders of nature. As a travel enthusiast and animal lover, she hopes to inspire others to discover and cherish the beauty and importance of the natural world.