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Martes martes


  • Adults: head and body 18-23"; tails 6 1/3 -11".
  • Weight can range from 500 to 1800g; with an average of 1100g.
  • Their fur is a rich brown coat, which is thick and silky in the winter but short and coarse in the summer.


  • The normal lifespan is three to four years, but they may live to 11 years, in the wild. In captivity, they may live up to 15 years.
  • Mating begins midsummer although implantation of the fertilized eggs in the womb may not occur until early the following spring. Gestation takes 27 days. There are 1 – 4 offspring in a litter.
  • At 7–8 weeks, the young emerge from the den and may begin dispersing during the breeding season at 12-16 weeks old.


  • They prefer to live in forest habitats, including deciduous, mixed, or coniferous. Old-growth forest is often preferred over young forest.
  • They are generally solitary animals except during the mating season.
  • They are an opportunistic and omnivorous species, although animal prey is preferred. Their diet varies with season and prey availability.

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