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Long-tailed Weasel winter-summer

Long-tailed Weasel

North Dakota Game Species
Fact Sheet
Scientific Name Mustela frenata
Description Long-tailed weasels have a long, cylindrical body with a triangular head, pointed nose, short ears and bushy tail. In summer, long-tailed weasels have a brown back with a white chin, chest and underbelly, and a black-tipped tail. In winter, they are all white with a black-tipped tail.
TracksLong-tailed Weasel Track Front/Rear–1" L, 1" W
Total Length 12-22 inches
Weight Less than 1 pound
Habitat Long-tailed weasels are found throughout North Dakota and inhabit all types of vegetation, but prefer areas near wetlands. Dens are often burrows created by other animals, or rock or log piles.
Breeding Season July-August. Fertilized eggs then delay implantation for 8-9 months.
Gestation Period 27 days
Litter Size 3-9 (average 4-5)
Social Aspects Solitary, except when breeding or rearing young.
Status Furbearer with a limited open season, stable population.
Food Habits Long-tailed weasels are carnivorous, consuming a variety of prey including voles, mice, moles, shrews, squirrels, rabbits, muskrats, birds, eggs, snakes and carrion.
Fun Facts Long-tailed weasels are the largest and most common of three weasel species found in North Dakota. The other two are the ermine, or short-tailed weasel (Mustela erminea), and the least weasel (Mustela nivalis).