The wolverine has a long tail and large paws. It is not a very good hunter so it thrives in areas where there are other predators that leave food behind. The wolverine is a predator that wants the prey but is less interested in the hunt. The wolverine plans his meals and saves. The food is buried in the snow, dragged up in trees or hidden in crevices.
The wolverine is strong and can carry food that weighs as much as itself for long distances. The wolverine is good at getting into hunting lodges and closed storerooms in search of food.
Wolverines live mainly in isolated Arctic regions in northern Canada, Alaska, Russia, Siberia and Fennoscandia.
The wolverine is also found in the Baltic countries, the Russian Far East, northeastern China and Mongolia.
The wolverine is an animal that enjoys being alone.
The wolverine’s body length is between 70–85 cm and 35-45 cm high. In addition, they have a long tail that can measure 15-25 cm.
An adult wolverine weighs between 9–16 kg.
The lifespan of a wolverine in the wild is 6-10 years. In captivity, the wolverine can be up to 18 years old.
It moves quickly at full rolling gallop. The wolverine can reach 45 km/h.
The wolverine is not only fast, he is also a good climber, good swimmers can get over snowy areas with ease. It is the wolverine’s large and flat paws that act as snowshoes. The wolverines tracks are large, usually 15 cm and shaped like a hand fan. The forepaws are larger than the hind paws.
If the wolverine becomes stressed or feels persecuted, it secretes a skunk-like stench with the help of a gland located at the anal opening.
The wolverine’s mating season lasts from April until August. The fertilized egg does not attach to the wall of the uterus until the end of the year. During February-March, the female then gives birth to 1-4 kits.
The wolverine’s lair is usually located on a snow-covered slope about 100 meters from where the forest ends. From the outside you can only see the entrance hole, but inside there has been an advanced tunnel system with places where the wolverine can rest during the day and toilets.
The wolverines who choose to live inside the forest often have their lair between boulders.
They feed from their mother and she brings them leftovers from her prey. There in the lair the kits stay until April when they start searching the area outside the nest. Towards the summer, the cubs are so big that they can go with her. During the autumn, they hunt together before it is time for them to find their own territory.
The newborn wolverines have white fur while they stay in the lair. The fur will later in their lives turn brown. When they are one year old, they are the same size as an adult. After 2-3 years, they become sexually mature, but the first mating often takes place at the age of 3-4.
The wolverine has a reputation for being aggressive but it is not common to be attacked by a wolverine. If a human gets too close to the wolverine’s nest with kits, the mother usually leaves her children and then returns when the threat is gone. Only if someone tries to pick up the kits does the female wolverine show some aggression.