American marten

The American marten or American pine marten[1] (Martes americana) is a North American member of the family Mustelidae, sometimes referred to as the pine marten. The name "pine marten" is derived from the common but distinct Eurasian species of Martes. It differs from the fisher (Pekania pennanti) in that it is smaller in size and lighter in colour.

American marten
Martes americana Yellowstone 2
At Yellowstone National Park
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Mustelidae
Genus: Martes
M. americana
Binomial name
Martes americana
(Turton, 1806)
  • M. a. americana[2]
  • M. a. abieticola
  • M. a. abietinoides
  • M. a. actuosa
  • M. a. atrata
  • M. a. brumalis
  • M. a. caurina
  • M. a. humboldtensis
  • M. a. kenaiensis
  • M. a. nesophila
  • M. a. origensis
  • M. a. sierrae
  • M. a. vancouverensis
  • M. a. vulpina
American Marten area
American marten range


14 subspecies have been recognized. Two subspecies groups have been recognized based on fossil history, cranial analysis, and mitochondrial DNA analysis.[3] None of the subspecies are separable based on morphology and subspecies taxonomy is usually ignored except with regards to conservation issues centered around subspecies rather than ranges.[4]

Martes americana americana subspecies group:

  • M. a. abieticola (Preble)
  • M. a. abietinoides (Gray)
  • M. a. actuosa (Osgood)
  • M. a. americana (Turton)
  • M. a. atrata (Bangs)
  • M. a. brumalis (Bangs)
  • M. a. kenaiensis (Elliot)

Martes americana caurina subspecies group:

  • M. a. caurina (Merriam)
  • M. a. humboldtensis (Grinnell and Dixon)
  • M. a. nesophila (Osgood)
  • M. a. origenes (Rhoads)
  • M. a. sierrae (Grinnell and Storer)
  • M. a. vancouverensis (Grinnell and Dixon)
  • M. a. vulpina (Rafinesque)

Distribution and habitat

The American marten is broadly distributed in northern North America. From north to south its range extends from the northern limit of treeline in arctic Alaska and Canada to northern New Mexico. From east to west its distribution extends from Newfoundland and south west to Napa County, California. In Canada and Alaska, American marten distribution is vast and continuous. In the western United States, American marten distribution is limited to mountain ranges that provide preferred habitat. Over time, the distribution of American marten has contracted and expanded regionally, with local extirpations and successful recolonizations occurring in the Great Lakes region and some parts of the Northeast.[5] The American marten has been reintroduced in several areas where extinction occurred.[6]


The marten lives in mature coniferous or mixed forests in Alaska and Canada, the Pacific Northwest of the United States[7] and south into Northern New England[8][9][10] and through the Rocky Mountains and Sierra Nevada. Small groups of martens live in the Midwest in Minnesota and Wisconsin. Trapping and destruction of forest habitat have reduced its numbers, but it is still much more abundant than the larger fisher. The Newfoundland subspecies of this animal (Martes americana atrata) is considered to be threatened. The Pacific Northwest subspecies, the Humboldt marten, is even more so, with only a few hundred individuals remaining.[11]

Home range

Compared to other carnivores, American marten population density is low for their body size. One review reports population densities ranging from 0.4 to 2.5 individuals/km2.[5] Population density may vary annually[12] or seasonally.[13] Low population densities have been associated with low abundance of prey species.[5]

Home range size of the American marten is extremely variable, with differences attributable to sex,[14][15][16][17] year, geographic area,[5] prey availability,[5][18] cover type, quality or availability,[5][18] habitat fragmentation,[19] reproductive status, resident status, predation,[20] and population density.[18] Home range size does not appear to be related to body size for either sex.[14] Home range size ranged from 0.04 sq mi (0.1 km2) in Maine to 6.1 sq mi (15.7 km2) in Minnesota for males, and 0.04 sq mi (0.1 km2) in Maine to 3.0 sq mi (7.7 km2) in Wisconsin for females.[18]

Males generally exhibit larger home ranges than females,[14][15][16][17] which some authors suggest is due to more specific habitat requirements of females (e.g., denning or prey requirements) that limit their ability to shift home range.[15] However, unusually large home ranges were observed for 4 females in two studies (Alaska[21] and Quebec[12]). Males and females in northeastern California appeared to have approximately equal home range size.[22]

Home ranges are indicated by scent-marking. American marten male pelts often show signs of scarring on the head and shoulders, suggesting intrasexual aggression that may be related to home range maintenance.[18] Home range overlap is generally minimal or nonexistent between adult males[13][16][23] but may occur between males and females,[13][16] adult males and juveniles,[16][24] and between females.[25]

Several authors have reported that home range boundaries appear to coincide with topographical or geographical features. In northeastern California, movements and home range boundaries were influenced by cover, topography (forest-meadow edges, open ridgetop, lakeshores), and other American marten.[22] In south-central Alaska, home range boundaries included creeks and a major river.[16] In an area burned 8 years previously in interior Alaska, home range boundaries coincided with transition areas between riparian and nonriparian habitats.[25] In northwestern Montana, home range boundaries appeared to coincide with the edge of large open meadows and burned areas; the authors suggested that open areas represent a "psychological rather than physical barriers".[26]



The American marten is a long, slender-bodied weasel about the size of a mink with relatively large rounded ears, short limbs, and a bushy tail. American marten have a roughly triangular head and sharp nose. Their long, silky fur ranges in color from pale yellowish buff to tawny brown to almost black. Their head is usually lighter than the rest of their body, while the tail and legs are darker. American marten usually have a characteristic throat and chest bib ranging in color from pale straw to vivid orange.[6] Sexual dimorphism is pronounced, with males averaging about 15% larger than females in length and as much as 65% larger in body weight.[6]

Total length ranges from 1.5 to 2.2 feet (0.5–0.7 m),[27][5] with tail length of 5.4 to 6.4 inches (135–160 mm),[27] Adult weight ranges from 1.1 to 3.1 pounds (0.5–1.4 kg)[27][5] and varies by age and location. Other than size, sexes are similar in appearance.[5] American marten have limited body-fat reserves, experience high mass-specific heat loss, and have a limited fasting endurance. In winter, individuals may go into shallow torpor daily to reduce heat loss.[28]


Marten with Flowers
American marten in flowers

American marten activity patterns vary by region,[18] though in general, activity is greater in summer than in winter.[6][28] American marten may be active as much as 60% of the day in summer but as little as 16% of the day in winter.[28] In north-central Ontario individuals were active about 10 to 16 hours a day in all seasons except late winter, when activity was reduced to about 5 hours a day. In south-central Alaska, American marten were more active in autumn (66% active) than in late winter and early spring (43% active).[16] In northeastern California, more time was spent traveling and hunting in summer than in winter, suggesting that reduced winter activity may be related to thermal and food stress or may be the result of larger prey consumption and consequent decrease in time spent foraging.[29]

American marten may be nocturnal or diurnal. Variability in daily activity patterns has been linked to activity of major prey species,[18][29] foraging efficiency,[16] gender, reducing exposure to extreme temperatures,[16][18][25] season,[23][28][29] and timber harvest. In northeastern California, activity in the snow-free season (May–December) was diurnal, while winter activity was largely nocturnal.[29] In south-central Alaska, American marten were nocturnal in autumn, with strong individual variability in diel activity in late winter. Activity occurred throughout the day in late winter and early spring.[16]

Daily distance traveled may vary by age,[21] gender, habitat quality, season,[23] prey availability, traveling conditions, weather, and physiological condition of the individual. Year-round daily movements in Grand Teton National Park ranged from 0 to 2.83 miles (0–4.57 km), averaging 0.6 mile (0.9 km, observations of 88 individuals).[23] One marten in south-central Alaska repeatedly traveled 7 to 9 miles (11–14 km) overnight to move between 2 areas of home range focal activity.[16] One individual in central Idaho moved as much as 9 miles (14 km) a day in winter, but movements were largely confined to a 1,280-acre (518 ha) area. Juvenile American marten in east-central Alaska traveled significantly farther each day than adults (1.4 miles (2.2 km) vs. 0.9 mile (1.4 km)).[21]

Weather factors

American marten standing in a snowy glade

Weather may impact American marten activity, resting site use, and prey availability. Individuals may become inactive during storms or extreme cold.[18][30] In interior Alaska, a decrease in above-the-snow activity occurred when ambient temperatures fell below −4 °F (−20 °C).[25] In southeastern Wyoming, temperature influenced resting site location. Above-snow sites were used during the warmest weather, while subnivean sites were used during the coldest weather, particularly when temperatures were low and winds were high following storms. High mortality may occur if American marten become wet in cold weather, as when unusual winter rains occur during live trapping.[6] In Yosemite National Park, drought conditions increased the diversity of prey items; American marten consumed fish and small mammal species made more accessible by low snow conditions in a drought year.[30]

A snowy habitat in many parts of the range of the American marten provides thermal protection[24] and opportunities for foraging and resting.[23] American marten may travel extensively under the snowpack. Subnivean travel routes of >98 feet (30 m) were documented in northeastern Oregon,[31] >33 feet (10 m) on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan,[31] and up to 66 feet (20 m) in Wyoming.[23]

American marten are well adapted to snow. On the Kenai Peninsula, individuals navigated through deep snow regardless of depth, with tracks rarely sinking >2 inches (5 cm) into the snow pack. Snowfall pattern may affect distribution, with the presence of American marten linked to deep snow areas.[24]

Adaptations to deep snow are particularly important in areas where the American marten is sympatric with the fisher, which may compete with and/or prey on American marten. In California, American marten were closely associated with areas of deep snow (>9 inches (23 cm)/winter month), while fishers were more associated with shallow snow (<5 inches (13 cm)/winter month). Overlap zones were areas with intermediate snow levels. Age and recruitment ratios suggested that there were few reproductive American marten where snow was shallow and few reproductive fishers where snow was deep.[32]

Where deep snow accumulates, American marten prefer cover types that prevent snow from packing hard and have structures near the ground that provide access to sub nivean sites.[33] While American marten select habitats with deep snow, they may concentrate activity in patches with relatively shallow snow. In north-central Idaho, American marten activity was highest in areas where snow depths were <12 inches (30 cm). This was attributed to easier burrowing for food and more shrub and log cover.[34]



American marten reach sexual maturity by 1 year of age, but effective breeding may not occur before 2 years of age.[28] In captivity, 15-year-old females bred successfully.[6][35] In the wild, 12-year-old females were reproductive.[35]

Adult American marten are generally solitary except during the breeding season.[6] They are polygamous, and females may have multiple periods of heat.[35] Females enter estrus in July or August,[28] with courtship lasting about 15 days.[6] Embryonic implantation is delayed until late winter, with active gestation lasting approximately a month. Females give birth in late March or April to a litter ranging from 1 to 5 kits.[28] Annual reproductive output is low according to predictions based on body size. Fecundity varies by age and year and may be related to food abundance.[5]

Denning behavior

Females use dens to give birth and to shelter kits. Dens are classified as either natal dens, where parturition takes place, or maternal dens, where females move their kits after birth.[5] American marten females use a variety of structures for natal and maternal denning, including the branches, cavities or broken tops of live trees, snags,[23] stumps, logs,[23] woody debris piles, rock piles, and red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus) nests or middens. Females prepare a natal den by lining a cavity with grass, moss, and leaves.[18] They frequently move kits to new maternal dens once kits are 7–13 weeks old. Most females spend more than 50% of their time attending dens in both pre-weaning and weaning periods, with less time spent at dens as kits aged. Paternal care has not been documented.[5]

Development of young

American Marten
American marten

Weaning occurs at 42 days. Young emerge from dens at about 50 days but may be moved by their mother before this.[5] In northwestern Maine, kits were active but poorly coordinated at 7 to 8 weeks, gaining coordination by 12 to 15 weeks. Young reach adult body weight around 3 months.[28]

Kits generally stay in the company of their mother through the end of their first summer, and most disperse in the fall.[5] The timing of juvenile dispersal is not consistent throughout American marten's distribution, ranging from early August to October.[5] In south-central Yukon, young-of-the-year dispersed from mid-July to mid-September, coinciding with the onset of female estrus.[13] Observations from Oregon[20] and Yukon[13] suggest that juveniles may disperse in early spring. Of 9 juvenile American marten that dispersed in spring in northeastern Oregon, 3 dispersed a mean of 20.7 miles (33.3 km) (range: 17.4–26.8 miles (28.0–43.2 km)) and established home ranges outside of the study area. Three were killed after dispersing distances ranging from 5.3 to 14.6 miles (8.6–23.6 km), and 3 dispersed a mean of 5.0 miles (8.1 km) (range: 3.7–6.0 miles (6.0–9.6 km)) but returned and established home ranges in the area of their original capture. Spring dispersal ended between June and early August, after which individuals remained in the same area and established a home range.[20]

Food habits

American marten are opportunistic predators, influenced by local and seasonal abundance and availability of potential prey.[28] They require about 80 cal/day while at rest, the equivalent of about 3 voles (Microtus, Myodes, and Phenacomys spp.).[18] Voles dominate diets throughout the American marten's geographic range,[28] though larger prey—particularly snowshoe hares—may be important, particularly in winter.[24] Red-backed voles (Myodes spp.) are generally taken in proportion to their availability, while meadow voles (Microtus' spp.) are taken in excess of their availability in most areas. Deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus) and shrews (Soricidae) are generally eaten less than expected, but may be important food items in areas lacking alternative prey species.[5] Birds were the most important prey item in terms of frequency and volume on the Queen Charlotte Islands, British Columbia. Fish may be important in coastal areas.[36]

American marten diet may shift seasonally[16][22][24][29][34] or annually.[16][30] In general, diet is more diverse in summer than winter, with summer diets containing more fruit, other vegetation, and insects. Diet is generally more diverse in the eastern and southern parts of American marten's distribution compared to the western part,[28] though there is high diversity in the Pacific states. American marten exhibit the least diet diversity in the subarctic, though diversity may also be low in areas where the diet is dominated by large prey species (e.g., snowshoe hares or red squirrels).[37]

American marten may be important seed dispersers; seeds generally pass through the animal intact, and seeds are likely germinable. One study from Chichagof Island, southeast Alaska, found that Alaska blueberry (Vaccinium alaskensis) and ovalleaf huckleberry (V. ovalifolium) seeds had higher germination rates after passing through the gut of American marten compared to seeds that dropped from the parent plant. Analyses of American marten movement and seed passage rates suggested that American marten could disperse seeds long distances: 54% of the distances analyzed were >0.3 mile (0.5 km).[38]


American marten in a tree in New Hampshire

Life span

American marten in captivity may live for 15 years. The oldest individual documented in the wild was 14.5 years old. Survival rates vary by geographic region, exposure to trapping, habitat quality, and age. In an unharvested population in northeastern Oregon, the probability of survival of American marten ≥9 months old was 0.55 for 1 year, 0.37 for 2 years, 0.22 for 3 years, and 0.15 for 4 years. The mean annual probability of survival was 0.63 for 4 years.[39] In a harvested population in east-central Alaska, annual adult survival rates ranged from 0.51 to 0.83 over 3 years of study. Juvenile survival rates were lower, ranging from 0.26 to 0.50.[21] In Newfoundland, annual adult survival was 0.83. Survival of juveniles from October to April was 0.76 in a protected population, but 0.51 in areas open to snaring and trapping.[19] In western Quebec, natural mortality rates were higher in clearcut areas than in unlogged areas.[40]


American marten are vulnerable to predation from raptors and other carnivores. The threat of predation may be an important factor shaping American marten habitat preferences, a hypothesis inferred from their avoidance of open areas and from behavioral observations of the European pine marten (Martes martes).[5] Specific predators vary by geographic region. In Newfoundland, red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) were the most frequent predator, though coyote (Canis latrans) and other American marten were also responsible for some deaths.[19] In deciduous forests in northeastern British Columbia, most predation was attributed to raptors.[17] Of 18 American marten killed by predators in northeastern Oregon, 8 were killed by bobcats (Lynx rufus), 4 by raptors, 4 by other American marten, and 2 by coyotes. Throughout the distribution of American marten, other predators include the great horned owl (Bubo virginianus), bald eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus), golden eagle (Aquila chrysaetos), Canada lynx (L. canadensis), mountain lion (Puma concolor),[6][35] fisher (M. pennanti), wolverine (Gulo gulo), grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis), American black bear (U. americanus), and grey wolf (C. lupus).[25] In northeastern Oregon, most predation (67%) occurred between May and August, and no predation occurred between December and February.[39]


The fur of the American marten is shiny and luxuriant, resembling that of the closely related sable. At the turn of the twentieth century, the American marten population was depleted due to the fur trade. The Hudson's Bay Company traded in pelts from this species among others. Numerous protection measures and reintroduction efforts have allowed the population to increase, but deforestation is still a problem for the marten in much of its habitat. American marten are trapped for their fur in all but a few states and provinces where they occur.[28] The highest annual take in North America was 272,000 animals in 1820.[18]

Trapping is a major source of American marten mortality in some populations[21][40] and may account for up to 90% of all deaths in some areas.[5] Overharvesting has contributed to local extirpations.[41] Trapping may impact population density, sex ratios and age structure.[5][18][28] Juveniles are more vulnerable to trapping than adults,[19][41] and males are more vulnerable than females.[5][19] American marten are particularly vulnerable to trapping mortality in industrial forests.[28]


Other sources of mortality include drowning,[31] starvation,[42] exposure,[39] choking, and infections associated with injury.[19] During live trapping, high mortality may occur if individuals become wet in cold weather.[6]

American marten host several internal and external parasites, including helminths, fleas (Siphonaptera), and ticks (Ixodida).[18] American marten in central Ontario carried both toxoplasmosis and Aleutian disease, but neither affliction was suspected to cause significant mortality.[35] High American marten mortality in Newfoundland was caused by encephalitis.[42]


 This article incorporates public domain material from the United States Department of Agriculture document "Martes americana".

  1. ^ a b Reid, F. & Helgen, K. (2008). "Martes americana". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2009.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 7 February 2010.
  2. ^ Martes americana, MSW3
  3. ^ Stone, Katharine. (2010). Martes americana, American marten. In: Fire Effects Information System. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). Retrieved on 2018-11-11.
  4. ^ Chapman, Joseph A.; Feldhamer, George A.; Thompson, Bruce C. (2003). Page 635.Wild Mammals of North America: Biology, Management, and Conservation ISBN 0-8018-7416-5
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t Buskirk, Steven W.; Ruggiero, Leonard F. (1994). "American marten}, pp. 7–37 in Ruggiero, Leonard F.; Aubry, Keith B.; Buskirk, Steven W.; Lyon, L. Jack; Zielinski, William J., tech. eds. The scientific basis for conserving carnivores: American marten, fisher, lynx, and wolverine. Gen. Tech. Rep. RM-254. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Clark, Tim W.; Anderson, Elaine; Douglas, Carman; Strickland, Marjorie (1987). "Martes americana" (PDF). Mammalian Species. 289 (289): 1–8. doi:10.2307/3503918. JSTOR 3503918. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 27 August 2012.
  7. ^ Larrison, Patrick and Larrison, Earl J. (1976). Mammals of the Northwest ISBN 0-914516-04-3
  8. ^ List of Vermont's Wild Mammals Archived 20 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine. (PDF) Retrieved on 2011-05-28.
  9. ^ List of Wild Mammals in Maine. (PDF) . Retrieved on 2011-05-28.
  10. ^ List of New Hampshire Wildlife Archived 3 September 2009 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 2011-05-28.
  11. ^ "Protections urged for Humboldt Martens". Curry Coastal Pilot. Retrieved 2018-06-28.
  12. ^ a b Godbout, Guillaume; Ouellet, Jean-Pierre (2008). "Habitat selection of American marten in a logged landscape at the southern fringe of the boreal forest" (PDF). Ecoscience. 15 (3): 332–342. doi:10.2980/15-3-3091.
  13. ^ a b c d e Archibald, W. R.; Jessup, R. H. (1984). "Population dynamics of the pine marten (Martes americana) in the Yukon Territory", pp. 81–97 in Olson, Rod; Hastings, Ross; Geddes, Frank, eds. Northern ecology and resource management: Memorial essays honouring Don Gill. Edmonton, Alberta: The University of Alberta Press. ISBN 0888640471.
  14. ^ a b c Smith, Adam C; Schaefer, James A (2002). "Home-range size and habitat selection by American marten (Martes americana) in Labrador". Canadian Journal of Zoology. 80 (9): 1602–1609. doi:10.1139/z02-166.
  15. ^ a b c Phillips, David M.; Harrison, Daniel J.; Payer, David C (1998). "Seasonal changes in home-range area and fidelity of martens". Journal of Mammalogy. 79 (1): 180–190. doi:10.2307/1382853. JSTOR 1382853.
  16. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m Buskirk, Steven William. (1983). The ecology of marten in southcentral Alaska. Fairbanks, AK: University of Alaska. Dissertation
  17. ^ a b c Poole, Kim G.; Porter, Aswea D.; Vries, Andrew de; Maundrell, Chris; Grindal, Scott D.; St. Clair, Colleen Cassady (2004). "Suitability of a young deciduous-dominated forest for American marten and the effects of forest removal". Canadian Journal of Zoology. 82 (3): 423–435. doi:10.1139/z04-006.
  18. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Strickland, Marjorie A.; Douglas, Carman W. (1987). "Marten", pp. 531–546 in Novak, Milan; Baker, James A.; Obbard, Martyn E.; Malloch, Bruce, eds. Wild furbearer management and conservation in North America. North Bay, ON: Ontario Trappers Association. ISBN 0774393653.
  19. ^ a b c d e f Hearn, Brian J. (2007). Factors affecting habitat selection and population characteristics of American marten (Martes americana atrata) in Newfoundland. Orono, ME: The University of Maine. Dissertation
  20. ^ a b c Bull, Evelyn L.; Heater, Thad W (2001). "Home range and dispersal of the American marten in northeastern Oregon". Northwestern Naturalist. 82 (1): 7–11. doi:10.2307/3536641. JSTOR 3536641.
  21. ^ a b c d e Shults, Bradley Scott. (2001). Abundance and ecology of martens (Martes americana) in interior Alaska. Fairbanks, AK: University of Alaska. Thesis
  22. ^ a b c Simon, Terri Lee. (1980). An ecological study of the marten in the Tahoe National Forest, California. Sacramento, CA: California State University. Thesis
  23. ^ a b c d e f g h Hauptman, Tedd N. (1979). Spatial and temporal distribution and feeding ecology of the pine marten. Pocatello, ID: Idaho State University. Thesis
  24. ^ a b c d e Schumacher, Thomas V.; Bailey, Theodore N.; Portner, Mary F.; Bangs, Edward E.; Larned, William W. (1989). Marten ecology and distribution on the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge, Alaska. Draft manuscript. Soldotna, AK: U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. On file with: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Lab, Missoula, MT; FEIS files
  25. ^ a b c d e Vernam, Donald J. (1987). Marten habitat use in the Bear Creek burn, Alaska. Fairbanks, AK: University of Alaska. Thesis
  26. ^ Hawley, Vernon D.; Newby, Fletcher E (1957). "Marten home ranges and population fluctuations". Journal of Mammalogy. 38 (2): 174–184. doi:10.2307/1376307. JSTOR 1376307.
  27. ^ a b c [Martes americana (American Marten), Idaho State University]
  28. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Powell, Roger A.; Buskirk, Steven W.; Zielinski, William J. (2003). "Fisher and marten: Martes pennanti and Martes americana", pp. 635–649 in Feldhamer, George A.; Thompson, Bruce C.; Chapman, Joseph A., eds. Wild mammals of North America: Biology, management, and conservation. 2nd ed. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 978-0-8018-7416-1
  29. ^ a b c d e Zielinski, William J.; Spencer, Wayne D.; Barrett, Reginald H (1983). "Relationship between food habits and activity patterns of pine martens". Journal of Mammalogy. 64 (3): 387–396. doi:10.2307/1380351. JSTOR 1380351.
  30. ^ a b c Hargis, Christina Devin. (1981). Winter habitat utilization and food habits of the pine marten (Martes americana) in Yosemite National Park. Berkeley, CA: University of California. Thesis
  31. ^ a b c Thomasma, Linda Ebel. (1996). Winter habitat selection and interspecific interactions of American martens (Martes americana) and fishers (Martes pennanti) in the McCormick Wilderness and surrounding area. Houghton, MI: Michigan Technological University. Dissertation
  32. ^ Krohn, W B; Elowe, K D; Boone, R B (1995). "Relations among fishers, snow, and martens: development and evaluation of two hypotheses". Forestry Chronicle. 71 (1): 97–105. doi:10.5558/tfc71097-1.
  33. ^ Buskirk, Steven W.; Powell, Roger A. "Habitat ecology of fishers and American martens". in Buskirk, pp. 283–296
  34. ^ a b Koehler, Gary M.; Hornocker, Maurice G (1977). "Fire effects on marten habitat in the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness". Journal of Wildlife Management. 41 (3): 500–505. doi:10.2307/3800522. JSTOR 3800522.
  35. ^ a b c d e Strickland, Marjorie A.; Douglas, Carman W.; Novak, Milan; Hunziger, Nadine P. (1982). Marten: Martes americana. In: Chapman, Joseph A.; Feldhamer, George A., eds. Wild mammals of North America: biology, management, and economics. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press, pp. 599–612 ISBN 0-8018-2353-6
  36. ^ Nagorsen, David W.; Campbell, R. Wayne; Giannico, Guillermo R. (1991). Winter food habits of marten, Martes americana, on the Queen Charlotte Islands. The Canadian Field-Naturalist. 105(1): 55–59
  37. ^ Martin, Sandra K. (1994). "Feeding ecology of American martens and fishers", in Buskirk, pp. 297–315
  38. ^ Hickey, Jena R. (1997). The dispersal of seeds of understory shrubs by American martens, Martes americana, on Chichagof Island, Alaska. Laramie, WY: University of Wyoming. Thesis
  39. ^ a b c Bull, Evelyn L.; Heater, Thad W (2001). "Survival, causes of mortality, and reproduction in the American marten in northeastern Oregon" (PDF). Northwestern Naturalist. 82 (1): 1–6. doi:10.2307/3536640. JSTOR 3536640.
  40. ^ a b Potvin, Francois; Breton, Laurier. (1995). "Short-term effects of clearcutting on martens and their prey in the boreal forest of western Quebec", pp. 452–474 in Proulx, Gilbert; Bryant, Harold N.; Woodard, Paul M., eds. Martes: taxonomy, ecology, techniques, and management: Proceedings of the 2nd international Martes symposium; 1995 August 12–16; Edmonton, AB. Edmonton, AB: University of Alberta Press
  41. ^ a b Berg, William E.; Kuehn, David W. "Demography and range of fishers and American martens in a changing Minnesota landscape", in Buskirk, pp. 262–271
  42. ^ a b Fredrickson, Richard John. (1990). The effects of disease, prey fluctuation, and clear cutting on American marten in Newfoundland. Logan, UT: Utah State University. Thesis.

External links


  • Buskirk, Steven W.; Harestad, Alton S.; Raphael, Martin G.; Powell, Roger A., eds. (1994). Martens, sables, and fishers: Biology and conservation. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. ISBN 0-8014-2894-7.
Asiatic linsang

The Asiatic linsang (Prionodon) is a genus comprising two species native to Southeast Asia: the banded linsang (Prionodon linsang) and the spotted linsang (Prionodon pardicolor). Prionodon is considered a sister taxon of the Felidae.


Caniformia, or Canoidea (literally "dog-like"), is a suborder within the order Carnivora. They typically possess a long snout and nonretractile claws (in contrast to the cat-like carnivorans, the Feliformia). The Pinnipedia (seals, walruses and sea lions) are also assigned to this group. The center of diversification for Caniformia is North America and northern Eurasia. This contrasts with the feliforms, the center of diversification of which was in Africa and southern Asia.

Fisher (animal)

The fisher (Pekania pennanti) is a small, carnivorous mammal native to North America. It is a member of the mustelid family (commonly referred to as the weasel family), and is in the monospecific genus Pekania. The fisher is closely related to, but larger than the American marten (Martes americana). The fisher is a forest-dwelling creature whose range covers much of the boreal forest in Canada to the northern United States. Names derived from aboriginal languages include pekan, pequam, wejack, and woolang. It is sometimes misleadingly referred to as a fisher cat, although it is not a cat.Males and females look similar. Adult males are 90 to 120 cm (35–47 in) long and weigh 3.5 to 6.0 kilograms (8–13 lb). Adult females are 75 to 95 cm (30–37 in) long and weigh 2.0 to 2.5 kg (4–6 lb). The fur of the fisher varies seasonally, being denser and glossier in the winter. During the summer, the color becomes more mottled, as the fur goes through a moulting cycle. The fisher prefers to hunt in full forest. Although an agile climber, it spends most of its time on the forest floor, where it prefers to forage around fallen trees. An omnivore, the fisher feeds on a wide variety of small animals and occasionally on fruits and mushrooms. It prefers the snowshoe hare and is one of the few animals able to prey successfully on porcupines. Despite its common name, it rarely eats fish.

The reproductive cycle of the fisher lasts almost a year. Female fishers give birth to a litter of three or four kits in the spring. They nurse and care for their kits until late summer, when they are old enough to set out on their own. Females enter estrus shortly after giving birth and leave the den to find a mate. Implantation of the blastocyst is delayed until the following spring, when they give birth and the cycle is renewed.

Fishers have few predators besides humans. They have been trapped since the 18th century for their fur. Their pelts were in such demand that they were extirpated from several parts of the United States in the early part of the 20th century. Conservation and protection measures have allowed the species to rebound, but their current range is still reduced from its historic limits. In the 1920s, when pelt prices were high, some fur farmers attempted to raise fishers. However, their unusual delayed reproduction made breeding difficult. When pelt prices fell in the late 1940s, most fisher farming ended. While fishers usually avoid human contact, encroachments into forest habitats have resulted in some conflicts.


Guloninae is a subfamily of the mammal family Mustelidae distributed across Eurasia and the Americas. It includes martens and the fisher, tayra and wolverine. These genera were formerly included within a paraphyletic definition of the mustelid subfamily Mustelinae.

Most gulonine species are arboreal to a degree. Some of the fashion furs come from this subfamily, i.e. sable, marten.

Humboldt marten

The Humboldt marten (Martes americana humboldtensis or Martes caurina humboltensis) is an endangered, genetically distinct subspecies of the American marten known only from the old-growth coastal redwood forests of the U.S. states of California and Oregon. Less than 300 of them survive in both states combined, in three different populations of 100 each; one in northern California, one straddling the California-Oregon border, and one in Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area. The subspecies was in fact considered extinct until being rediscovered in the Six Rivers National Forest in 1996. They are most threatened by a lack of population expansion and by human-caused mortalities, including trapping and road mortality. While California has already banned all commercial trapping of martens, Oregon still permits it. In response, environmental organizations seek a ban on trapping west of Interstate 5. However, in California itself the marten is threatened by the increasing number of marijuana farms destroying its habitat in the area.

List of mammals of Ohio

This list of mammals of Ohio includes a total of 70 mammal species recorded in the state of Ohio. Of these, three (the black bear, Indiana bat, and Allegheny woodrat) are listed as endangered in the state, three (the Norway rat, house mouse, and wild boar) are introduced, two (the gray bat and Mexican free-tailed bat) are considered accidental, and eight (the American bison, elk, cougar, Canada lynx, gray wolf, American marten, marsh rice rat, and southern red-backed vole) have been extirpated from the state.

The following codes are used to designate some species:

(E) - Species listed as endangered in Ohio

(A) - Species considered accidental in Ohio

(Ex) - Species that has been extirpated from Ohio, but can still be found elsewhere

(I) - Species established in Ohio as a result of human intervention


Lutrogale is a genus of otters, with only one extant species—the smooth-coated otter.


A lynx (; plural lynx or lynxes) is any of the four species (Canada lynx, Iberian lynx, Eurasian lynx, bobcat) within the medium-sized wild cat genus Lynx. The name lynx originated in Middle English via Latin from the Greek word λύγξ, derived from the Indo-European root leuk- ('light, brightness') in reference to the luminescence of its reflective eyes.Two other cats that are sometimes called lynxes, the caracal (desert lynx) and the jungle cat (jungle lynx), are not members of the genus Lynx.

Margaree River

The Margaree River (Abhainn Mhargaraidh) is a river on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia. The northeast branch of the river derives from the watershed of the Cape Breton Highlands, while the Southwest Margaree flows northeast from Lake Ainslie. The two branches join at Margaree Forks. The river then flows north to empty into the Gulf of Saint Lawrence at Margaree Harbour, Nova Scotia. The river is 120 km in length and drains an area of 1,375 km². The Margaree has been well known for a century for its trout and Atlantic salmon sport fishery, that draws anglers from near and far. Fishing is highly regulated now and is restricted to fly fishing only, with barbless hooks, in the main stem of the river. Famed American angler and Atlantic salmon conservationist Lee Wulff caught his first salmon on a fly on the Margaree in 1933.The gravel bars of the upper Northeast Margaree provide spawning grounds for Atlantic salmon; its steep valleys provide habitat for American marten and the rare Gaspé shrew. The Margaree Valley includes a mix of farms and woodlands.

During the 18th century, Acadians settled along the coast near the mouth of the river; the French name for this river was St. Marguerite. Scottish Highlanders began to settle in the Margaree Valley at the beginning of the 19th century.

Moses Coady, a noted son of the Margaree Valley, attended school in Margaree Forks and later, taught there before completing his education in Antigonish and Rome.The Margaree was designated a Canadian Heritage River in 1998.

HMCS Margaree, a World War II Canadian naval destroyer, was named after this river.


The martens constitute the genus Martes within the subfamily Guloninae, in the family Mustelidae. Martens are slender, agile animals, adapted to living in taigas, and are found in coniferous and northern deciduous forests across the Northern Hemisphere. They have bushy tails and large paws with partially retractible claws. The fur varies from yellowish to dark brown, depending on the species, and, in many cases, is valued by fur trappers.

Martin, Washington

Martin is an extinct town in the northwest United States, in Kittitas County, Washington. The GNIS classifies it as a populated place; Stampede Pass is near to the west.

A post office called Martin was established in 1892, and remained in operation until 1902. The community was named for the fact an American marten was killed near the original town site.In 1939, the Northern Pacific Railway opened a ski area on the eastern portal of the Stampede Tunnel called Martin Ski Dome. The resort was to compete with the ski area built a few miles north by the Milwaukee Road at Hyak in 1937, the Milwaukee Ski Bowl. It closed in 1942 with the start of World War II and then was sold to the University of Washington students association; it re-opened as "Husky Chalet" and had two rope tows. The Meany Lodge of The Mountaineers is also nearby.


The Mustelidae (; from Latin mustela, weasel) are a family of carnivorous mammals, including weasels, badgers, otters, ferrets, martens, mink, and wolverines, among others. Mustelids are diverse and the largest family in the order Carnivora, suborder Caniformia. Mustelidae comprises about 56-60 species across eight subfamilies.


Mustelinae is a subfamily of family Mustelidae, which includes weasels, ferrets amd minks.It was formerly defined in a paraphyletic manner to also include wolverines, martens, and many other mustelids, to the exclusion of the otters (Lutrinae).

Newfoundland pine marten

The Newfoundland pine marten (Martes americana atrata) is a genetically distinct subspecies of the American marten (Martes americana) found only on the island of Newfoundland in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada; it is sometimes referred to as the American marten (Newfoundland population) and is one of only 14 species of land mammals native to the island. The marten was listed as endangered by the COSEWIC in 2001 and has been protected since 1934, however the population still declines. The Newfoundland marten has been geographically and reproductively isolated from the mainland marten population for 7000 years. The Newfoundland pine marten is similar in appearance to its continental cousin, but is slightly larger, with dark brown fur with an orange/yellow patch on the throat. Females are an average weight of 772 grams and males have an average weight of 1275 grams. The Newfoundland subspecies is also observed to inhabit a wider range of forest types than its mainland counterparts. The population characteristics suggest that the Newfoundland marten is a product of unique ecological setting and evolutionary selective factors acting on the isolated island population. The Newfoundland pine marten is omnivorous, feeding on mainly small mammals, along with birds, old carcasses, insects and fruits; it is currently found in suitable pockets of mature forest habitat, on the west coast of Newfoundland and in and around Terra Nova National Park. The Pine Marten Study Area (PMSA) is located in southwestern Newfoundland and is a 2078 km2 wildlife reserve that was created in 1973 to protect the Newfoundland Marten.

North Central Rockies forest

The North Central Rockies forests is a temperate coniferous forest ecoregion of Canada and the United States. This region gets more rain on average than the South Central Rockies forests and is notable for containing the only inland populations of many species from the Pacific coast.

Rocky Mountains subalpine zone

The Rocky Mountains subalpine zone is the biotic zone immediately below tree line in the Rocky Mountains of North America. In Colorado, the subalpine zone occupies elevations approximately from 9,000 to 12,000 feet (2,700 to 3,700 m); while in northern Alberta, the subalpine zone extends from 1,350 to 2,300 metres (4,400 to 7,500 ft).

Small mammals of Yellowstone National Park

There are at least 50 small mammal species known to occur in Yellowstone National Park.

Species are listed by common name, scientific name, typical habitat and relative abundance.


The wolverine () (also spelled wolverene), Gulo gulo (Gulo is Latin for "glutton"), also referred to as the glutton, carcajou, skunk bear, or quickhatch, is the largest land-dwelling species of the family Mustelidae. It is a stocky and muscular carnivore, more closely resembling a small bear than other mustelids. A solitary animal, it has a reputation for ferocity and strength out of proportion to its size, with the documented ability to kill prey many times larger than itself.

The wolverine is found primarily in remote reaches of the Northern boreal forests and subarctic and alpine tundra of the Northern Hemisphere, with the greatest numbers in Northern Canada, the American state of Alaska, the mainland Nordic countries of Europe, and throughout western Russia and Siberia. Its population has steadily declined since the 19th century owing to trapping, range reduction and habitat fragmentation. The wolverine is now essentially absent from the southern end of its European range.


ZooAmerica is a zoo located in Hershey, Pennsylvania, United States. The zoo was founded in 1910 by Milton S. Hershey with a few animals, including bears, birds, and deer. Today, the zoo covers 11 acres and is home to more than 75 species and 200 individual animals, including some that are rare and endangered.The zoo is privately controlled by the Hershey Trust Company and is connected to Hershey Park. ZooAmerica is also an accredited member of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) and the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA).

Extant Carnivora species

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.