The San Joaquin (SJ) kit fox is a native species that once thrived in grasslands across the Central Valley. However, habitat loss, habitat fragmentation, poisons, vehicle strikes, and other factors significantly decreased their population. In 1967, they were listed as a federal endangered species and state listed as threatened under the California Endangered Species Act in 1971.
SJ kit foxes are highly opportunistic and will eat rodents, insect, dead animals, and unsecured trash, human food or pet food. Increased human presence and access to non-natural food can alter their natural behaviors, diet, and foraging habits. These changes can result in less fear of people and more human-fox interactions as they seek food and raise pups. The city of Bakersfield, with a human population of more than 400,000, is one unique example of an urban population of SJ kit foxes.