Year of 2017

Bat-eared fox kits in Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, Botswana

Anyone can celebrate National Dog Day, even foxes. These bat-eared foxes belong to the canid family, along with their relatives, including domestic dogs, jackals, and wolves. It is the only species in the genus Otocyon, and its scientific name, Otocyon megalotis, basically translates as ‘big-eared dog.’ Those distinctive black ears contain large blood vessels, which help to regulate its body temperature on the African Savannah. They also come in handy around dinner time. With an ear to the ground, the bat-eared fox can easily detect its favorite meal: termites.

The bat-eared fox is a species of fox found on the African savanna, named for its large ears, which are used for thermoregulation. Fossil records show this canid first appeared during the middle Pleistocene, about 800,000 years ago. It is considered a basal canid species, resembling ancestral forms of the family.
Scientific name: Otocyon megalotis
Biological classification: Species
Belongs to: Otocyon