The majority of the bat-eared fox’s diet consists of small invertebrates, such as ants and termites (8). This species forages primarily at night or during dull, overcast periods of the day, in keeping with its nocturnal lifestyle. The bat-eared fox uses its large ears during foraging, positioning them to point towards the ground to pick up sounds made by invertebrates. This species can also be observed to dig into the ground using its front paws to reach underground prey (7).
The remarkable ears are also very important in communication between individuals.
The bat-eared fox is usually a monogamous species which shows little territoriality, and members of this species typically have overlapping ranges (10). The female gives birth to one to five cubs, after a gestation period of two months. The male bat-eared fox will stay close to the female for the whole breeding season (11). After birth, the male will usually stay at the den to protect the cubs, while the female scouts for food to maintain her milk production (7) (12).
Whether or not the bat-eared fox forages in groups depends on the availability of prey. If there are large swarms of insects, groups of 2 to 15 foxes can be found foraging together (10) (9). Where lessprey available, this species will tend to forage alone or in pairs (7).
The adult bat-eared fox is subject to predation by large carnivores such as lions, leopards, cheetahs, brown and spotted hyenas and African wild dogs. Pups are also vulnerable to predation by smaller carnivores, such as the black-backed jackal, while bird predators, such as the martial eagle, may occasionally be a threat (13) (14).