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Causes and Rates of Mortality of Swift Foxes in Western Kansas

Management Implications

In many situations, control of coyotes may enhance distribution and abundance of swift fox populations. However, managers should proceed cautiously. Cypher and Scrivner (1992) evaluated reduction of coyote numbers to increase kit fox survival but were unsuccessful in reducing coyote numbers sufficiently to affect kit fox populations. Ralls and White (1995) reported that although coyote predation on kit foxes can be severe, red foxes may pose an even greater threat to kit fox populations because red foxes rapidly expanding into areas occupied by kit foxes appear to be displacing them. This observation of the kit fox -- red fox relations possibly is a model of the relations between the swift fox and red fox. Without understanding interspecific relations between the swift fox and red fox, we risk ineffective or possible failure of management programs, loss of time and funds, and may compromise conservation of the swift fox.
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