Foxes are small-to-medium-sized, omnivorous mammals belonging to several genera of the family Canidae. Foxes have a flattened skull, upright triangular ears, a pointed, slightly upturned snout, and a long bushy tail (or brush).
Twelve species belong to the monophyletic group of Vulpes genus of "true foxes". Approximately another 25 current or extinct species are always or sometimes called foxes; these foxes are either part of the paraphyletic group of the South American foxes, or of the outlying group, which consists of bat-eared fox, gray fox, and island fox. Foxes live on every continent except Antarctica. By far the most common and widespread species of fox is the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) with about 47 recognized subspecies. The global distribution of foxes, together with their widespread reputation for cunning, has contributed to their prominence in popular culture and folklore in many societies around the world. The hunting of foxes with packs of hounds, long an established pursuit in Europe, especially in the British Isles, was exported by European settlers to various parts of the New World.
The fox appears in many cultures, usually in folklore. However, there are slight variations in their depictions in folklore. In Western folklore and also in Persian folklore, foxes are depicted as a symbol of cunning and trickery – a reputation derived especially from their reputed ability to evade hunters. This is usually represented as a character possessing these traits. These traits are used on a wide variety of characters, either making them a nuisance to the story, a misunderstood hero, or a devious villain.
In Asian folklore, foxes are depicted as a familiar spirit possessed of magic powers. Similar to Western folklore, foxes are depicted as mischievous, usually tricking other people, with the ability to disguise as an attractive female human. However, there are other depictions of foxes as a mystical, sacred creature, that can either bring wonder or ruin. Nine-tailed foxes appear in Chinese folklore, literature, and mythology, in which, depending on the tale can be a good or a bad omen. The motif was eventually introduced from Chinese to Japanese and Korean cultures.
The constellation Vulpecula represents a fox.
Source: Fox from Wikipedia
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