American Marten

Martes Americana
Domain: Eukarya
Kingdom: Anamalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family: Mustelidae
Genus: Martes
Species: M. Americana


The American Marten is found in North America, from north to south its range extends from the northern limit of treeline in arctic Alaksa and Canada to northern New Mexico. From east to west its distribution extends from Newfoundland to California. Also in the Great Lakes, coniferous or mixed forests in Alaska and Canada, the Pacific Northwest of the United States, and south into Northern New England, through the Rocky Mountains and Sierra Nevada. Small groups of martens live in the Midwest in Minnesota and Wisconsin.


~The American Marten mainly lives in the Northern Forests; Taiga Forests. The average temperature is below freezing for six months out of the year, the winter temperature range is -54 to -1° C (-65 to 30° F) while the summer gets as low as -7° C (20° F). The total precipitation in a year is 30 - 85 cm (12 - 33 in), the forms the precipitation comes in are rain, snow and dew.
~The fauna the Marten interacts with is their prey which is typically small rodents found on the forest floor. The flora that it interacts with are the tree's they live in and the few plants they play with.
~The physical adaptations are that they have fur to keep them warm in the snow and the behavioral adaptaions depend on the weather. If it is warm, they come out, if it is cold, they stay in.
external image American-marten-in-snowy-habitat.jpg

Species Interactions

The American Marten eats many different types of species such as the Northern Red-Backed Vole, Snowshoe Hare, Red Squirrel, Northern Flying Squirrel, and the Rasberry plant too. It's feeding strategy is different for every season of the year. For the winter, they burrow under the snow to catch their prey. For the summer, their diet is more berries, veggitation, and insects that are just out and around.


~The life cycle of the Marten is that they mate in the summer months, usually June or Agust. The females are polygamous, so they have more than one mate in a season. Once an egg is fertilized, implantation is delayed and the egg remains as a blastocyst in the female’s uterus for 190-250 days . In February, the fertilized egg implants itself into the female marten’s uterus, and development takes about 28 days. They are then born live in about March or April and are blind, deaf, and toothless, but already will have a thick coat of smooth fur.
~The mating strategy is that the female with urinate or use their abdominal scent glands to mark the ground. They will also become very vocal; grunting, screaming, or growling to attract a male.This can last for about 15 days during which much wrestling and playing occurs between potential mates. Once a mate is chosen, a male will grab the female’s skin from behind with its teeth and may hold on to or drag her around for up to 30 minutes before mating.
~The Marten's parenting strategy is that the mother will stay with her babies for several months making sure they do not leave the nest. By six weeks old, it will have to be weaned, and by four months old, it will reach maturity and the mother will leave her babies on their own.


external image marten-zaida-ortega.jpg