Fennec Fox: here’s the scoop


Human activity is rising rapidly in many parts of the Sahara. New permanent human settlements and new roads have resulted in the disappearance of foxes in these areas as well as increased road kill accidents. Fennec foxes are also threatened by trapping for exhibition, sale to tourists for the pet trade, and the fur trade.

Committed to Conservation

The Buttonwood Park Zoo participates in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums Species Survival Plan (SSP) for Fennec Foxes. The goal of the SSP is to cooperatively manage animal populations within AZA accredited zoos to ensure the sustainability of a healthy and genetically diverse population while enhancing the conservation of this species in the wild.

Insider Info

Our fennec foxes are important members of the Zoo’s Animal Ambassador Program and currently live behind-the-scenes. You may see them out with educators for encounters, special events or school programs. The animal ambassadors at Buttonwood Park Zoo are working ambassadors of their species and of their wild counterparts.  They stimulate interest and appreciation, dispel myths and fears, reconnect visitors with the natural world and stir all those they encounter to action.


Fennec Fox

Scientific name

Vulpes zerda


Arid desert environments and remote sand seas. Stable sand dunes are believed to be ideal habitat although they also live in very sparsely vegetated sand dunes near the Atlantic coast


Omnivorous. Feeding on fruits, vegetables, rodents, eggs, reptiles and insects.

life expectancy

10 – 12 years

Did you know?

Fennec foxes are the smallest canid species, weighing around 2 to 3 pounds as an adult. They have many unique adaptations which allow them to live in the desert. Most distinctive are their very large ears that radiate body heat to help keep them cool.


Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco, Niger, Sudan, Tunisia, Western Sahara

Conservation status

Least Concern

Widespread and abundant