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Weasels, part of the family Mustelidae, are curious, yet cunning, mammals that are found in most parts of the U.S. and Canada. They take over burrows of other animals in a variety of habitats such as the tundra, forests, grasslands and around homes in wood piles. Fierce hunters themselves, weasels have several known predators.
Predators in Pursuit
Weasels have both terrestrial and arboreal predators. Arboreal predators, or animals that mainly live in trees, include birds such as northern goshawks, hawks, owls and falcons. Terrestrial predators, or animals that mainly live on land, include other weasels, minks, fishers, martens, foxes, coyotes, badgers, bobcats, cats, domesticated dogs and snakes.
Weasels, who are known to be quite aggressive, have several defense mechanisms against predators. As the seasons change, so does the weasel's fur coat. During the summer, their coats are brown. This helps them blend in with trees, shrubs and forest debris. In the winter, their coats commonly turn white so that they blend in with snow. Weasels also deter predators by producing a strong musky odor from their two scent glands, which are located under their tails.
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