Yesterday the little male arctic fox that had spent over 24 hour sleeping between the station buildings died. I had photographed him day before yesterday and did notice that he looked a bit scruffy and stiff legged.
When I went to check on him yesterday afternoon, he was lying on his side and no longer reacting. I felt a little sad but it is part of nature and even those tough little survivors do not live forever. When I had a closer look it seemed he was rather old. His incisors were missing and the canines were quite worn. I put him on the scales to find his weight of only 1.85 kg. It was a rather little fox and perhaps the one we have seen during the last couple of years nick named the "3/4 fox". He did interact with another fox the day before yesterday, displacing it from some bits of interesting food items. That other fox may be the one that took shelter under the houses last spring. I'm not sure you can recognize individual foxes and we don't artificially mark them. During spring they loose their winter fur so their coat changes all the time. The dead one is now in the freezer and will be used as scientific samples.