VT gray fox study

In the last twenty years, gray fox populations in North America have been declining.

While there haven’t been any official studies on gray foxes in Virginia, reports from various sources suggest fewer sightings, vocalizations, and camera captures in the state over the past decade.

To address this worrying trend, the Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources is backing the Virginia Gray Fox Project led by Virginia Tech (VT).

The project’s main goal is to map where gray foxes currently are in Virginia and assess if their numbers are dropping by analyzing historical data over the state.

To achieve this, researchers plan to do a thorough camera survey all over Virginia.

To carry out this large-scale survey effectively, the research team needs volunteers who:

1. Already have trail cameras set up on their property.
2. Are willing to use and watch project cameras (if provided) on their property.
3. Are okay with letting researchers access their land to set up additional cameras.

Volunteers will need to follow specific rules for where to put cameras and how to collect data.

Checking the cameras to make sure they’re working and have enough battery life will be required.

The survey will take three years, with the focus of the 2024 field season being on the Appalachian Mountain region.

If you want to get involved with the Virginia Gray Fox Project, you can contact Victoria Monette by email at vmonette@vt.edu or leave a voicemail for Dr. Kelly at 540-231-1734.

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