Stone marten Facts

Stone marten Facts
Stone marten, also known as beech marten is a member of the weasel family. There are 11 subspecies of stone martens that can be found in Europe and Central Asia. They inhabit open woodlands, rocky areas and human settlements. Unlike other species of martens, stone martens have coarse fur that is not especially popular in the fashion industry. They are widely distributed and abundant in the wild. Stone martens are classified as least concern (at the moment, there are no threats for their survival).
Interesting Stone marten Facts:
Stone marten can reach 16.5 to 19 inches in length and 3.25 to 5.5 pounds of weight. Tail is usually 10 inches long. Males are larger than females.
Stone marten is covered with brown fur with patch of white fur on the chest. Density of the fur changes seasonally (fur is thickest during the winter).
Stone marten has small head, short snout and rounded ears. It has elongated body, short legs and long tail.
Stone marten is an agile climber and excellent swimmer, but it spends most of the time on the ground.
Paws of stone marten are not very large or covered with enough fur to ensure movement across the snow. Because of that, stone marten uses paths made by skis and hares during the winter.
Stone marten is crepuscular (active at twilight) and nocturnal (active during the night) animal.
Stone marten is an omnivore (it eats plants and meat). Its diet is based on rodents (rats and mice), birds (sparrows, snowcocks, partridges and poultry), insects, fruit and berries.
Stone marten hides inside the hollow trees and crevices of rocks (in the wild) and buildings (in the urban areas) during the day.
Natural enemies of stone martens are red foxes and lynxes. Birds of prey and wildcats hunt young stone martens.
Stone marten is solitary and territorial animal. Males live on a territory of up to 200 hectares.
Mating season of stone martens takes place during the June and July.
Females are able to delay pregnancy. Embryonic development starts 6.5 to 8 months after copulation and ends in one month. One litter consists of 3 to 7 kits. Babies are usually born during the March and April. They are blind, naked and helpless at birth. Kits depend on the mother's milk during the first 40 to 45 days of life.
Young stone martens are ready to begin independent life at the age of one year. They reach sexual maturity at the age of 15 to 27 months.
Stone martens have unusual habit to destroy tubes and cables of vehicles in urban areas. Majority of "car attacks" takes place during the spring, when young martens start to use their teeth and learn which items are edible, and which are not.
Stone martens can survive from 10 to 18 years in the wild.

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