National Geographic: Arctic Foxes ‘Grow’ Their Own Gardens
Conducted in 2014 near Churchill, Manitoba, the experiments revealed that the foxes’ organic waste supports almost three times as much botanical biomass in summer months as the rest of the tundra…
These tundra oases are beyond just being postcard beautiful: They boost the Arctic environment.
And that means more food options in a place without many, says Jim Roth of the University of Manitoba, a co-author on the recent study.
Greater plant diversity gives herbivores a spot to forage during short summers, he explains. (See National Geographic photos of Arctic animals.)
“Lots of other species visit these dens,” adds Roth, who has been studying arctic foxes since 1994. “Caribou and other herbivores are attracted to the lush vegetation, and scavengers come looking for goose carcasses.”