Wolverine Facts

wolverine portraitPortrait of a Wolverine

One of the coolest wolverine facts is that their claws are used like climbers crampons to help them ascend icey slopes.

The wolverine is the largest member of the weasel family, which includes an assortment of very tough, often aggressive carnivores.

Burly and bear-like, wolverines are about as big as a medium sized dog, about 3 feet long, and 30 to 50 pounds.

Some exceptional males may reach up to 60 or even 70 pounds.

They have long, powerful, arching claws, and muscular forelimbs and shoulders, allowing them to ramshackle through and tear open rotted stumps in search of grubs and other insects.

They will also use their claws to literally dig voles, gophers and rabbits straight out of the ground.

They have also been known to eat fox, beaver and even porcupine.

Wolverines spend most of their time rummaging around in search of anything edible, including a small amount of vegetation likes roots and berries, but their diet consists mainly of carrion.

They have poor eyesight and average hearing but a tremendous sense of smell with which they can detect the presence of a rotting corpse from miles away, or from beneath several feet of snow.

Wolverines are fearless and may stalk and take down remarkably large prey like deer, elk or young moose, but are usually only successful with the help of deep snow to aid their hunt.

wolverine with huge claws

The wolverine is an impressive animal, with a long, very dense, water-proof coat of brown fur.

A distinctive lighter colored band covers the rump and extends up both sides fading out around the shoulder.

The head is a very broad wedge with small, dark eyes, and neat, widely set ears.

Wolverines are found in the Northern tundra and subarctic regions of the world, such as Siberia and Alaska.

They move about both day and night, but are generally nocturnal.

They are mostly terrestrial animals who move about their large territories with a brisk, loping gate, but they can also climb trees, and will pursue prey up in the branches.

They will also store larger kills in the crook of trees, similar to what leopards do, or cover a cache of meat with snow or earth to save for later.

Wolverines are mostly solitary animals who mark their territories with anal gland secretions.

Females are more territorial than males and will chase intruders.

They are often called "stink bears" or even "skunk bears" because of the powerful, musty scent.

They live in permanent territories and males may form permanent relationships with the females in neighboring ranges.

Male wolverines who form partnerships with females will visit their territories a few times a year, and may even spend some time with their offspring.

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a few more Wolverine facts

wolverine running in field
  • Wolverines have poor eyesight but a great sense of smell
  • They can smell a dead animal buried 10 or even 20 feet below the snow
  • A 30 pound wolverine can take down a deer weighing 150 pounds
  • Wolverines have special teeth for slicing through frozen flesh
  • Wolverine fur does not collect frost or ice and is used to line parkas and hoods
  • The wolverine has 4 inch long claws
  • Average lifespan for a wolverine is about 10 years

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