Weasel

LIVING HABITS

The weasel can be found all over Finland. The weasel lives wherever its main source of food, small rodents are to be found. Weasels catch voles in bushes and tall grassy areas, felling openings, edges of swamps and forests, fields and even in outbuildings. Though the weasel is active at all times of the day, it can rarely be spotted: the smallest predator in all of Europe travels nimbly through rocky terrain and all sort of vegetation, staying even in the tunnels dug by voles, safely out of sight from humans. The weasel stores its surplus food for the rainy day.

PROTECTION

The weasel is a protected species in nature conservation areas.

ADAPTING TO THE WINTER

The northern weasels shed their pure white winter fur for a brown on the back in the spring. The colouring protects it from predators.

Weasel

Mustela nivalis

CLASS:

ORDER:

FAMILY:

SIZE: Weight: 24-80g, length: 11-20cm + length of tail: 1,9-4cm, male much larger than female.


BREEDING: Heat: usually in the spring, 1 (-2) litters a year. Gestation period: 34-36 days and nights, offspring 3-9 at a time. Independent in 2-3 months, a female born in the beginning of the summer reaches sexual maturity in already 3 months.

LIFESPAN: 4-7 years

Did you know that the weasel needs to feed itself even thrice the amount of its body weight? The weasel babies weigh only a couple of grams when born and the adults 80g at the most. The smaller the animal, the faster its metabolism and the bigger its comparative need for food.