The Christian Science Monitor

Cuddly foxes show the ‘softer side’ of evolution

When Lee Dugatkin went to Siberia in 2012 to learn more about an experiment that is illuminating one of the oldest problems in evolution, there was a moment he describes as “nirvana.”

“This animal, which had never seen me before, within five seconds was licking my nose and ears,” says the University of Louisville biologist and science historian. “He was calmer and more friendly than the calmest lap dog you can imagine.”

This friendly animal was not a dog, but a fox, , a species not typically known for leaping into the arms of unfamiliar primates. But this particular fox, a reddish male adult with a slender build and puplike

Playing the foxFrom wild to mildA unified hypothesis?Domesticating the domesticators

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