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|Red foxes are the largest species of the genus Vulpes. However, relative to dimensions, red foxes are much lighter than similarly sized dogs of the genus Canis. Their limb bones, for example, weigh 30 percent less per unit area of bone than expected for similarly sized dogs. They display significant individual, sexual, age and geographical variation in size. On average, adults measure 35β50 cm (14β20 in) high at the shoulder and 45β90 cm (18β35 in) in body length with tails measuring 30β55.5 cm (11.8β21.9 in). The ears measure 7.7β12.5 cm (3β5 in) and the hind feet 12β18.5 cm (5β7 in). Weights range from 2.2β14 kg (4.9β30.9 lb), with vixens typically weighing 15β20% less than males. Adult red foxes have skulls measuring 129β167 mm (5.1β6.6 in), while those of vixens measure 128β159 mm (5.0β6.3 in). The forefoot print measures 60 mm (2.4 in) in length and 45 mm (1.8 in) in width, while the hind foot print measures 55 mm (2.2 in) long and 38 mm (1.5 in) wide. They trot at a speed of 6β13 km/h, and have a maximum running speed of 50 km/h. They have a stride of 25β35 cm (9.8β13.8 in) when walking at a normal pace.: North American red foxes are generally lightly built, with comparatively long bodies for their mass and have a high degree of sexual dimorphism. British red foxes are heavily built, but short, while continental European red foxes are closer to the general average among red fox populations. The largest red fox on record in Great Britain was a 17.2 kg (38.1 lbs), 1.4-metre (4 ft 7 in) long male, killed in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, in early 2012.|
The winter fur is dense, soft, silky and relatively long. For the northern foxes, the fur is very long, dense and fluffy, but is shorter, sparser and coarser in southern forms.Among northern foxes, the North American varieties generally have the silkiest guard hairs,:231 while most Eurasian red foxes have coarser fur.:235 There are three main colour morphs; red, silver/black and cross (see Mutations). In the typical red morph, their coats are generally bright reddish-rusty with yellowish tints. A stripe of weak, diffuse patterns of many brown-reddish-chestnut hairs occurs along the spine. Two additional stripes pass down the shoulder blades, which, together with the spinal stripe, form a cross. The lower back is often a mottled silvery colour. The flanks are lighter coloured than the back, while the chin, lower lips, throat and front of the chest are white. The remaining lower surface of the body is dark, brown or reddish. During lactation, the belly fur of vixens may turn brick red. The upper parts of the limbs are rusty reddish, while the paws are black. The frontal part of the face and upper neck is bright brownish-rusty red, while the upper lips are white. The backs of the ears are black or brownish-reddish, while the inner surface is whitish. The top of the tail is brownish-reddish, but lighter in colour than the back and flanks. The underside of the tail is pale grey with a straw-coloured tint. A black spot, the location of the supracaudal gland, is usually present at the base of the tail. The tip of the tail is white.
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