Grey Fox - ch'omak
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January 27, 2021

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Grey Fox - ch'omak

The Grey Fox in Yucatec Maya is Ch'omak and is one of the mammals found in Belize. The pray fox's ability to climb trees is shared only with the Asian Raccoon Dog among canids.

Foxes in the Popol Vuh:
"now it was all the animals,
Both great and small,
That had done it
The puma and th jaguar,
The deer and the rabbit,
The fox and the coyote,
The peccary and the coati,
The small bits and the great birds.
These had done it. In a single night they did."

The Grey Fox is another critter found in the north side of Ambergris whose existence in the ecosystem is a surprise to many who visit this little corner of paradise. Slimmer than their American counterparts, they are quite adept at climbing trees to forage for birds nests, and are actually the only dog-like carnivores to display this behavior. Their hooked claws allow them to climb vertical tree trunks with ease, but funnily enough when climbing down they do so slowly and backwards like a cat.

They are omnivorous so they will hunt small prey, but fruits and vegetation can also make up a large part of their diet. As nuts, fruits and grains grow wild throughout a season, the foxes will stash the food items away and cover the area with their scent either with their urine or with scent glands which allows them to find the food at a later date and also prevents other animals from finding it.

Photograph courtesy Belize Yucatec Maya

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