Weight : 1.5 kg (3.5 lb)
The European pine marten (martes martes) is the size of an ordinary domestic cat, with a long body, small head, pointed muzzle, round ears and eyes that are usually dark brown. A Pine Marten's fur is also brown, and during the summer, the hue of the coat turns lighter. They have a cream / yellow 'bib' marking on their chests. Feet are totally furred, with sharp claws, which enable them to climb. Of the mustelids, they are the only ones that have semi-retractable claws.
Pine Martens are related to the Mustelid which includes skunks, weasels and otters. Males and females (both) have two kinds of scent glands, anal and abdominal. A Pine Marten rubs its belly over a log/vegetation via the abdominal glands to mark off an area to call it its own.
Young pine martens are blind (for the first 36 days), deaf and toothless, and have thick, short fur and weigh only about 30 g at birth. After 7 to 8 weeks the young leave their den and after 12 to 16 weeks they leave their den for good.
The European pine marten is an excellent tree top hunter. It is an omnivore and its diet mainly consists of small mammals (voles / squirrels), birds, insects, frogs, and carrion.
Interesting fact: The winter coat of the European pine marten has always been very much in demand. They have been successfully kept on fur farms, but due to the life history characteristics, this is not feasible on a large commercial scale
Picture of a Pine Marten (Martes martes) taken At the Wildwood Trust, Kent UK UK wildlife Blog, source Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 License
The European pine martin, pine martin is listed as Least Concern (LR/lc), lowest risk. Does not qualify for a more at risk category. Widespread and abundant taxa are included in this category, on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species
Namings for the European pine martenA European pine marten group is called a 'richness'.
CountriesAlbania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and United Kingdom
Some facts about the
European pine marten
Adult weight : 1.3 kg (2.86 lbs)
Maximum longevity : 18 years
Female maturity :456 days
Male maturity : 426 days
Gestation : 28 days
Weaning : 59 days
Litter size : 4
Litters per year : 1
Interval between litters : 365 days
Weight at birth : 0.03 kg (0.066 lbs)
Weight at weaning : 0.68 kg (1.496 lbs)
Basal metabolic rate : 4 W
Body mass : 0.92 kg (2.024 lbs)
Temperature : 36.85 °C (98.33 °F)