What do Weasels look like and how are they different from Stoats and Pine Martens?
Weasels have long slender bodies, and short tails. Males are generally longer in body length than females, ranging between 17cm and 22cm. Weasels have ginger or russet brown fur with a
cream underside, and live in dens, which are usually the nests of former prey and lined with fur of prey in the winter to provide warmth.
Stoats are larger than Weasels and have longer tails that have a distinctive black tip. Many Stoats go white in the winter months. Weasels do not change colour.
Pine Martens have longer, fluffy tails and longer bodies than Weasels and Stoats. They are on the verge of extinction in England and Wales although they are still found in the Scottish Highlands and Grampian.
What is the legal protection of the Weasel family?
Pine Martens are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and the Conservation Regulations 1994.
It is an offence to intentionally take, injure, kill or possess wild Pine Martens without a licence.
They are also protected from intentional or reckless disturbance, damage to, destruction or obstruction of their places of shelter or protection.