Kit foxes in the Mojave Desert were exposed to canine distemper from an unknown source at the construction site of a solar energy plant last year and are dying from the disease, which has spread at least 11 miles from the site. Kit foxes on Santa Catalina Island experienced an outbreak in 1999, but vaccinations and captive breeding efforts saved that population. Experts say such efforts will be much more difficult in the vast expanse of the desert.

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