Red Fox
Sound & Calls

Golden Jackal (Canis aureus)

Male & female Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes), Cazorla National Park, Spain

The Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) is a widely-distributed canid species found throughout many regions of the northern hemisphere. It was also introduced to Australia by European settlers and is now an abundant pest species which often preys on vulnerable native birds and mammals. This species is highly adaptable and is able to find and catch prey in all kinds of habitats.

What does a fox sound Like? Red Foxes make a variety of different sounds including barks, screams, howls, squeals and ‘gekkering’ calls. Recent studies have identified 12 different sounds produced by adults and 8 by kits. Two of the most commonly-heard calls are the ‘bark’ & ‘scream’, perhaps because these are the loudest and can be heard for some distance. Another common call is the ‘wow wow wow’ contact call, which sounds more like a bird than a mammal! Red Foxes can be quite noisy when fighting, making loud screaming noises, chatters and squeals. You can hear examples of various Red Fox sounds below.

Interestingly, the sound of the fox has become one of the most searched for animal vocalizations in the last few years following the hugely popular novelty dance song “The Fox (What does the fox say?)” by the Norwegian comedy pair ‘Ylvis’! In the song, a number of silly possibilities for the fox’s voice are offered but on this page you’ll discover what the fox really says!

Listen to Red Fox Sounds

The following video contains a visualization of some of the audio recordings published below demonstrating what a fox sounds like.

In this second video further variations of the typical scream call and contact call can be heard.


Red Fox – Typical Screams

 MX04 This first audio sample is an example of the typical hoarse ‘screams’ of the Red Fox. Recorded in Cazorla National Park, Spain.


Red Fox – Contact call

 DH01 This sample features the wow-wow-wow contact call of the Red Fox. This noise is often mistaken for a bird. Recorded at night in Dharug National Park, NSW, Australia.

The video below features the calls of a different fox species, the small, insectivorous Bat-eared Fox (Otocyon megalotis) from sub-Saharan Africa. I recorded these sounds during a recent trip to North Tuli Game Rserve, Botswana.

Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes) in Cazorla National Park, Spain