Common Name

Scientific Name

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Photo by Bill Bates
Photo Copyright Bill Bates

The American marten, Martes americana, is furbearing mammal that is about two feet in length from head to tail and yellowish-brown in color. It occurs in much of Alaska and Canada, and its range extends into several areas of the contiguous Untied States. In Utah, the species has been found in many of the high remote mountainous areas of the state. American martens prefer forest habitat, where their dens can be found in logs, hollow trees, stumps, and rock crevices.

The species mates during the summer, and females give birth to a litter of one to five young during the following spring; litters are often smaller when food is scarce. American martens are typically solitary animals that may cover great distances each day looking for food. The diet of the species consists primarily of small mammals, although birds, insects, and fruits are occasionally consumed.


  • Biotics Database. 2005. Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, NatureServe, and the network of Natural Heritage Programs and Conservation Data Centers.

  • Burt, W. H. and R. P. Grossenheider. 1980. A field guide to the mammals. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston. 289 pp.