Newfoundland Pine Marten


Newfoundland Pine Martens are adorable, furry, and about the size of a house-cat, but don’t mistake them for your family’s feline – they probably don’t want to be cuddled! They are members of the Mustelidae family, which includes weasels, badgers and even wolverines. Martens are known for being curious and are easily excitable creatures. They also have lightning fast reflexes and lots of energy.

DID YOU KNOW… during the spring and summer months, Newfoundland Pine Martens are active for 16 hours a day? That certainly makes most house pets look pretty lazy for sleeping all the time!

Pine Martens have thick fur, which is vital for surviving the cold winters of the Taiga forests that they call home. Unfortunately, this beautiful fur also makes them a big target for poachers. In the past, their fur was a very popular material for use in coats and clothing, which caused their population numbers to drop.

newfoundland pine marten
The Newfoundland Pine Marten's fur keeps it warm even during the coldest winters

Since 1934, Canada has had a ban on marten trapping. However, since poachers are still allowed to set traps for other fur-bearing animals, many martens get caught in these traps and are killed accidentally. In 1986 they were listed as threatened because there were about 800 Newfoundland Pine Martens left. Today there are only 300-600 remaining in the wild.

newfoundland pine marten
Newfoundland Pine Marten

Status: Threatened


Although Pine Martens can be found across Canada, this type of marten is only found on the island of Newfoundland. The Grassy Place in Newfoundland and Labrador, located off Robinsons River Valley, is an excellent example of the Pine Marten’s habitat. It is an area filled with untouched forests of Spruce and Fir trees and at least two adults have been confirmed living there. It is also home to other animals like the La Poile Woodland Caribou herd.

Newfoundland Pine Marten, Newfoundland
Island of Newfoundland is where the Newfoundland Pine Marten makes its home


Apart from trapping, the biggest threat to the Newfoundland Pine Marten population is habitat loss. Large-scale logging projects cut down 1000s of hectares of forests each year, making the land unsuitable for these martens.

Take Action

Newfoundland Pine Martens need your help! Here is what you can do:

  • Start a Bring Back the Wild campaign for the Newfoundland Pine Marten. The money you raise will help them in three ways:
    • Fund expeditions in the Grassy Place to study and learn about this habitat, take an inventory of populations and develop a plan to protect species at risk.
    • Restrict access to this area so trappers don’t accidentally capture martens in their rabbit traps.
    • Educate kids like you about habitats that are in trouble and how they can help protect them.
  • The fur trade is a big threat to many animals and you can help by choosing not to wear fur. Check out Wild Cats in the Fur Trade to find out more.
Earth Rangers is a non-profit organization that works to inspire and educate children about the environment. At kids can play games, discover amazing facts, meet animal ambassadors and fundraise to protect biodiversity.



Your Avatar
LOG IN or JOIN to leave a comment