Difference Between Red Fox and Grey Fox

Red Fox vs Grey Fox

As their names sound, the two animals are named according to the coloration of their coat. However, only if their colorations are precisely known, it could be identified who is who. That is because both red fox and grey fox have red and grey colours in their coat, but in different proportions. Therefore, it demands a precise knowledge about the characteristics of both red fox and grey fox together. This article attempts to discuss the important characteristics of these two animals separately and the comparison presented at the end would be interesting to follow.

Red Fox

Red fox, Vulpes vulpes, is a type of true foxes living in the Northern hemisphere. The importance of red foxes is high, as they are the most widely spread and the largest true fox species. Their natural distribution ranges in North America, Europe, Asia, and some Northern Africa. There are 45 subspecies of red foxes, an extraordinarily high diversity within one species. The subtropical, temperate, and arid cold climates of the Northern hemisphere have been conquered by this interesting mammalian species of the Order: Carnivora. The body size of red fox is large among many fox species, their body length could range from 45 to 90 centimetres, and the weights could vary from 2.2 to 14 kilograms. Female red foxes are usually smaller, and the weight is about 20% lesser than the males. In addition, an adult male is about 35 – 50 centimetres tall at their shoulders. The tail of a red fox is usually long, and it exceeds the length of half of body length. Overall, it is an elongated body with short legs. Their braincase is small, and the skull is slender and elongated. There are few different colourations, which are known as Red, Grey, Cross, Blackish brown, Silver, Platinum, Amber, and Samson. However, the typical colouration of the red fox is the red colouration, in which the fur is bright reddish rusty coloured with yellowish tints. Additionally, the underparts are white in colour and the flank is lighter than the back. The coat of fur becomes denser in the winter than in summer, but the silkiness of hairs is the highest in the North American red foxes. These are social animals, and feed on an omnivorous diet. They have a binocular vision and are excellent runners as well as good swimmers.

Grey Fox

Grey fox, Urocyon cinereoargenteus, is the most primitive member of the present day canids. Grey fox is naturally distributed only in the Americas, especially in North America from southern Canada across the entire United States to Northern Venezuela and Colombia. There are 16 subspecies of grey fox recognized as of today. They are active in the night and feed on an omnivorous diet, but plant matter is very high in their food. The coat consists of dense fur, and it is coloured with more grey and less reddish brown and white. Anterior underparts and the lower neck areas are reddish while the entire dorsal area is grey in colour. The sexual dimorphism is very little, but the females are slightly smaller than male grey foxes. Their body length could vary from 50 to 70 centimetres, and the bodyweight is about 3.6 – 7 kilograms. The tail of grey fox is long and bushy. Grey foxes often climb trees using their strong claws.


What is the difference between Red Fox and Grey Fox?

• Grey foxes are usually smaller than red foxes.

• Grey foxes are native animals of the Americas, whereas red fox is naturally distributed over the subtropical, temperate, and arid cold regions of the entire Northern hemisphere.

• Red fox has a denser fur than in grey fox.

• Grey fox can climb trees, but not the red fox.

• Red foxes are sexually more dimorphic compared to grey fox.

• Grey foxes are compact animals, but the red foxes are slender and elongated.

• Grey foxes are towards grey, but the red foxes towards red in coloration.