Predator vs. Prey: Red Fox vs. Vole

By | December 1, 2012
From Xplor: December 2012/January 2013

The struggle to survive isn't always a fair fight. Here's what separates nature's winners from its losers.

Lethal Leap

A fox can leap the length of a living room to pounce paws-first upon an unsuspecting vole.

Hair Snare

Even when it can’t see squat, a fox’s super-sensitive whiskers guide its teeth to snap up a squirming vole.

Strength in Numbers

More than 400 voles may live in a space the size of a football field. With so many morsels scurrying around, each vole has better odds of not being munched.


Rodents Voles build a maze of tunnels through the grass, snow, and soil to disappear into when a hungry fox comes calling. Prairie vole

Superhero Hearing

A fox’s oversized ears can pinpoint a vole rustling under the snow from 100 feet away—about the length of a basketball court!

and the winner is...

Voles are like walking cheeseburgers, and nearly every predator in Missouri will snack on one if given the chance. Red foxes are no exception, and this particular rodent has run its last maze.

And More...

This Issue's Staff

David Besenger
Les Fortenberry
Karen Hudson
Regina Knauer
Noppadol Paothong
Marci Porter
Mark Raithel
Laura Scheuler
Matt Seek
Tim Smith
David Stonner
Nichole LeClair Terrill
Stephanie Thurber
Cliff White