Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Pine marten

Martens are members of the same family of mammals as the badgers, otters, ferrets, weasels and ermine. They resemble large ferrets or weasels, with long, lithe bodies, short legs and pointed muzzles.

The European marten (M. foina) inhabits most parts of Europe. It is a most elegant and lively animal, exceedingly agile and graceful in its motions. The female breeds in hollows trees and produces from three to seven young at a time, which in winter, have sometimes been found sheltered in magpies’ pests.

The American marten, Martes americana of North America, is about 20-23 inches long with an 8 inch tail. It has light red to blackish fur and a buff or orange-colored throat patch.

Martes americana
It lives in forests, showing a preference for conifers, and range across most of the northern United States, Canada, and Alaska. This species is also found in Northern Asia and Europe.

It very closely resembles the marten of Europe, but may distinguished but its smaller size, longer legs, finer, thicker and more glossy fur and from the throat being marked by a broad yellow spot whilst the same part in the European marten is white.

This agile mustelid American marten speeds through the trees in pursuit of red squirrels and other prey. It will also hunt birds and insects and forage for fruit, nuts, and carrion.
Pine marten
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