Field Guide/Mammals/American Marten

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Martes Americana (American Marten)
Family: Mustelidae[1]
Size: Total Length: 24 to 30 inches; Weight: 2 pounds. [2]
Description: The American Marten is a weasel that is small in size with golden brown fur and a yellow chest. They are long animals with small, cat-like ears.[2]
Similar Species: The American Marten is a type of weasel that is very often mistaken by the Pine Marten.

Range: They are found in the northern reaches of North America.
Habitat: Mature, Northern forests. They den in hollow trees, crevices, or vacant ground burrows. [3]
Diet: Their diet consists of small mammals, including squirrels and rodents. Occasionally birds, fruit, nuts, insects, and carrion are eaten as well.[3]
Activity: They are arboreal (tree dwelling) and are nocturnal. Seen before in male/female pairs as well as with young. Most hunting occurs at dusk and dawn, when prey species are most active.[3]

Reproduction: Martens are pregnant 8-9 months, but the fetus only develops during the last two months. The litter of two or three babies are called kits and are usually born in a hollow log or under bushes.[3]
Lifespan: approximately 17 years.[3]

Notes: Marten distribution and demographic rates are affected by the loss of closed-canopy forest due to logging. Martens are still legally trapped for their fur in most of the western states.[1]
American Marten (Martes Americana)

  1. a b Reid, F.; Helgen, K. (2008), Martes Americana,, retrieved (October 7, 2012) 
  2. a b Berg, Bill (2001), "Minnesota Conservation Volunteer Magazine", American Marten (Martes Americana) (january- february),, retrieved (October 7, 2012) 
  3. a b c d e Ellis, Eric, J. (1999), Martes Americana (on-line),, retrieved (October 7, 2012)