subfamilies: u.a. Badger, honey badger, Mustelinae (including marten), otter, silver badger, sun badger
Latin name: Mustelidae
size: depending on the species
mass: depending on the species
Older: up to 20 years
Appearance: depending on the species
Sexual dimorphism: Yes
Nutrition type: Omnivore (omnivor)
food: Amphibians, berries, eggs, fish, insects, small mammals, fruit, plant tubers, birds, worms
distribution: Eurasia, North America, South America, Africa
original origin: unknown
Sleep-wake rhythm: twilight and nocturnal
habitat: depending on the species
natural enemies: Birds of prey
sexual maturity: about the second year of life
mating season: depending on species and location
gestation: depending on the species (between 4 and 8 weeks)
litter size: 1 - 4 cubs
social behavior: Loners
Threatened with extinction: No
Further profiles of animals can be found in the Encyclopaedia.
Interesting about marten
- The Marten or Mustelidae describe a nearly sixty-species family of small predators that can be found on all continents except Australia, the Pacific Islands and the Antarctic.
- In addition to the real martens, the otters, minks, polecats, weasels and badgers are counted among this family.
- Almost all marten species share the elongated physique with the strikingly short limbs. Only the badgers and the wolverines have a rather stocky and round body.
- Marten populate different habitats depending on the distribution area. They are found in forests and rainforests, meadows, steppes and savannas as well as in fresh and salt water. Many species live in close proximity to waters, others semi-aquatic or aquatic.
- Depending on the species, the skin of the marten appears in different shades of brown and gray and can be monochrome as well as spotted or striped.
- For many species of martens, the color of the coat changes seasonally.
- Marten live predominantly as loners, who are especially active at night or in the dark and retire to their hiding places during the day to sleep. Occasionally, however, they also go hunting during the day.
- Many martens take over the abandoned buildings of other animals, only a few species make their own shelter.
- Marten basically show a pronounced territorial behavior. They tag their hunting grounds with urine, feces or with special fragrance secretions that they produce in their anal glands.
- After mating many marten species are dormant. Although the fertilized egg cell nests in the lining of the uterus, it does not develop until after the winter.
- Female martens give birth after a gestation period of a maximum of two months several juveniles, who are initially blind. They grow up relatively quickly and are usually weaned within the first month of life.
- Marten are omnivores that feed mainly on carnal food. They capture smaller mammals, fish, crustaceans, worms, insects, birds, eggs of various species, as well as reptiles and amphibians. Depending on the season, however, fruit and berries are also important food sources in human settlements and kitchen waste.
- The maximum life expectancy of martens is twenty years.
- The biggest enemy of the marten is the human. Some species of marten, such as mink or sable, are the suppliers of valuable furs and are bred on furry farms. Other martens are considered to be pests causing great harm to nesting in buildings or as vectors of disease.