It’s extremely rare to see a group of foxes together in the wild, and if you do, it will most likely be a mother and her children. So, if you ever do actually see a grouping of foxes, what would you call them? We may not know what the fox says, but we do know what to call a group of foxes!
A group of foxes is called a skulk. Alternatively, such groups can also be referred to as a leash or earth. The first term “skulk” has Scandinavian origins, coming from a word that means to wait, move invisibly, or lurk.
So why was the word “skulk” chosen to refer to a group of foxes? In this article, we’re going to examine the meaning of this word and why it can be used to refer to foxes, as well as other key information. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about what to call a group of foxes.
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Origins of the Word
As we mentioned earlier, the word “skulk” has Scandinavian origins and means to lurk, creep, or move invisibly. So why was this word chosen for a group of foxes? Well, there are a few possible explanations as to why.
First, the fact that foxes skulk and hide in caves, up trees, or down burrows may be a reason for calling them a skulk. The word “skulk” has also traditionally been used to refer to vermin, and in many parts of the world, foxes are viewed as such. This is especially true in Europe, where fox populations often go out of control.
This word could also be a reference to the fox’s natural cunning nature. Foxes are known to be stealthy and clever, using their wits to outsmart their prey and those who may be hunting them. It’s true that foxes are adept at skulking!
Other Names to Call a Group of Foxes
Besides the word “skulk,” there are also a few other names that are commonly used to refer to a group of foxes.
The first alternate term is a lead. Because foxes may form groups to go out and explore their surroundings for food, they rely entirely upon one fox to act as a leader. This is why this term has come into use, as a group of faxes will generally be seen being led by their leader.
The next is the word “earth.” This is a bit of a strange one, but it actually makes sense. Foxes dwell in dens under the earth, using their sharp claws to dig through the dirt to construct their dens. While living in their dens, they may often form familial groups. As such, the term “earth” has come to be used for a group of foxes in a den.
Finally, you can also call a group of foxes a leash. To be specific, this refers to a group of three foxes only. The term “leash” refers to captured domestic foxes in groups, which usually will not exceed three at once. So you can use this term for any group of domesticated foxes you find, as long as it’s not greater than three at once.
Why Foxes May Form Groups
There are many reasons why foxes may form groups with one another, even though many of them prefer to hunt or forage for food alone. Foxes are known to be one of the more friendly animals, often forming groups with each other for social reasons.
Even though many of them prefer to be solitary, foxes may also form groups to hunt together. They are more effective hunting in skulks, as they can corner and trap otherwise elusive prey. This also helps them to find more prey, as they can fan out and comb a wide area that would be difficult to cover alone.
Foxes will typically form these hunting groups at nighttime, as they are nocturnal animals and spend most of the day sleeping safely in their dens. However, researchers have noticed a new trend in urban foxes.
Foxes that live in more urban areas have developed the tendency to move and hunt more during the day or during dusk and less at night.
If you live anywhere near foxes, it is not uncommon to see a group of foxes out hunting or playing together in the woods or in fields of grass.
You may even see some foxes out hunting alone, but they usually behave much more cautiously when they’re not with other foxes. This behavior is to help them stay out of sight of predators that might find a single fox easy prey.
Thanks to conservation efforts in North America, fox populations are very healthy, and hunting these sly creatures is also illegal. However, in other parts of the world, foxes are not protected as much and maybe hunted for sport.
Foxes are sly creatures that like to skulk, creep, and lurk at night, hunting down their prey by using their speed and wits.
When a group of foxes comes together in one place or to hunt, they are referred to as a skulk. In certain situations, you can also refer to such groupings as a lead, leash, or earth.
You will typically find groups of foxes only at night when most of them enjoy hunting. Some species of fox have developed the tendency to hunt during the day, though, which may make it more likely that you’ll happen across a skulk wherever you live.
Keep an eye out in wooded areas or fields with tall grass, as foxes like to hunt in these places more than others.
We hope the information we’ve outlined in this article has answered all of your questions about what to call a group of foxes.
To learn more fun facts about animals, remember to check out our other articles. Thanks for reading!