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Silver Fox Domestication Experiment

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5 Littlegrey Comments:

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October 27th, 2010 at 1:19 pm TopMonkey says:

That video was full of insane awesomeness. The only question it didn't answer for me was what happened if an tame animals was mated with an untamed one...which trait was dominant. I certainly would love to have one of these as a pet. We have a desert fox where I live and from time to time I get to see them close up, such as when they harass the dog, and they are such nimble and attractive creatures I can see the the draw to having one. These silver fox are far more attractive than the desert species, or the red fox which we also have.

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October 27th, 2010 at 1:47 pm cynnicysm says:

i want to do this with a jackal. man, such an interesting experiment! also, top, my guess would be that aggression is a more suitable survival trait, and i would guess it's dominant. i feel like if it weren't dominant, over time the foxes would have become more tame on their own.

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October 27th, 2010 at 10:20 pm RJ says:

They have red foxes, too. Last I heard, they cost $1500USD apiece, not including shipping from Russia. Also, here in the US, the animal would have to sit in quarantine for up to a month (I think that's the time limit). You have to pay for the quarantine, as well. So, let's just guesstimate about $2500, give or take 500.

That price tag is seriously the only thing keeping me from getting a pet fox. If I ever hit the lotto or otherwise improve my finances, I can almost guarantee I'll get one.

In some US states, it's still legal to own Fennec foxes, which are also very cute and lovable creatures. The downside to a Fennec is their insane energy level, as well as the fact that if it ever escapes, that's it. You'll never see it again. They're not very attached to their owners.

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October 29th, 2010 at 2:16 am felis20 says:

"what happened if an tame animals was mated with an untamed one...which trait was dominant."

Well, like they said in the video, there are multiple traits. And some of them are bound to be codominant, so... there would be a lot of variability.

Personally, I'm hoping they try this with Bengal tigers (if they CAN be tamed, that is), and have them ready for sale in my lifetime (within the next couple billion years; I plan on being immortal, cruel, despotic, and menagerie-owning. I feel it would fit my personality well...).

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October 29th, 2010 at 8:59 pm Afiag says:

The guy towards the end is a moron. The foxes didn't start to look different because they were bred for tameness, they started to look different because they were ONLY bred for tameness. Genetic mutation occurs in the wild all the time, but usually Natural Selection snuffs a lot of them out.
Like the shorter legs would be bad in the wild, and the curly tail would be bad as well, because they use their tails for balance when running. The discoloration would be bad too, because they'd lose camouflage. All of it is simple stuff that would inhibit the animal in the wild.