The desert kit fox occupies an estimated 101,800 km2 in California. Four previous studies have been conducted on this species with none reported seasonal or annual survival rates. We captured and fitted mortality-sensitive radio collars to 56 desert kit foxes between October 2012 and August 2014 to estimate seasonal and annual survival rates. Predation was the most common mortality source, with 11 of 15 mortalities identified as predation, which is consistent with previous studies elsewhere in the kit foxes range. We found no difference in seasonal (range 0.836–1.000) or annual (0.809) survival rates between male and female foxes. Our study represents the first survival estimate for desert kit foxes in California and fills critical regional life history knowledge gaps.
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Vol. 41 • No. 1