A polar fox is fitted with a satellite tracking collar in Krossfjorden, Svalbard, a Norwegian Arctic archipelago, on July 29, 2017, as part of research conducted by the Norwegian Polar Institute. (Elise Stroemseng/Norwegian Polar Institute via AP)

Arctic fox walks 4,500 km from Norway to Canada

News comes from research published by the Norwegian Polar Institute

An arctic fox walked more than 4,415 kilometres from northern Norway to Canada’s far north in four months, Norwegian researchers said.

The Norwegian Polar Institute reported the young female fox left her birth place on Norway’s Svalbard archipelago on March 1, 2018 and reached Canada’s Ellesmere Island by way of Greenland on July 1, 2018.

The ground the small fox cumulatively covered over those four months was among the most ever recorded for an arctic fox seeking a place to settle down and breed, the institute said in a research article subtitled “One female’s long run across sea ice.”

Institute scientists monitored the fox’s movements with a satellite tracking device they fitted her with in July 2017 near her native habitat by a glacier on Norway’s Spitsbergen island. She stayed close to home then gradually ventured out until she left the island on March 26, 2018.

During the walk to Canada, the roughly two-year-old fox moved at an average rate of 46.3 kilometres per day, the Norwegian scientists said.

“The short span of time spent covering such a distance highlights the exceptional movement capacity of this small-sized carnivore species,” they said.

READ MORE: Shelter reunites Alberta cat with its Vancouver Island family

The distance between the fox’s natal den and where she settled on Ellesmere Island was 1,789 kilometres if travelled in a straight line, according to the institute.

The sea ice allows Norway’s arctic foxes to reach Greenland and then North America, though it’s not known why they leave their birth places in search of places to breed, the researchers said.

The animals, which have thick fur to survive cold environments and live to about age four, subsist on fish, marine birds and lemmings.

The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

LETTER: Most take on healthcare to save lives, not get more money

Reader disturbed by call local person’s call for hazard pay during COVID

LETTER: Different view questions mandated social distancing

Look at the science behind herd immunity versus current approach to curtailing COVID

LETTER: Verbal attack on foreign workers disturbing

Racist and derogatory comments on social media disheartening and disappointing to Maple Ridge native

LETTER: How about a fashion contest for COVID face gear

Not trying to make light of the pandemic, but how about a community competition, no age limit

ON THE PAGE: FVRL Express launches Monday

It’s as easy as click, pick, and go at Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows libraries starting next week

QUIZ: Test your knowledge of the world of summer sports

In a typical year, there are plenty of summer sporting events and tournaments held across Canada

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

Thanks for helping The News to continue its mission to provide trusted local news

‘We’re sick of it’: Anger over police killings shatters U.S.

Tens of thousands marched to protest the death of George Floyd

Police watchdog investigating death of man in Delta

Independent Investigations Office asking for witnesses to May 29 incident at Tsawwassen ferry terminal

Surrey mayor’s party under fire for ‘sickening’ tweet accusing northern B.C. RCMP of murder

Mayor Doug McCallum says tweet, Facebook post ‘sent out by unauthorized person’

Father’s Day Walk Run for prostate cancer will be virtual event this year throughout B.C.

The annual fundraiser for Prostate Cancer Foundation BC has brought in $2.5 million since 1999

Dr. Bonnie Henry announces official ban on overnight kids’ camps this summer

New ban comes after talking with other provincial health officials across the country, Henry says

Senior man in hospital after unprovoked wolf attack near Prince Rupert

Conservation officers are on site looking for the wolf

VIDEO: NASA astronauts blast off into space on SpaceX rocket

Marks NASA’s first human spaceflight launched from U.S. soil in nearly a decade

Most Read