Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Differences Between Ermines And Weasels

Ermines vs. Weasels

Technically, and most specifically in the American usage, ‘weasel’ may refer to the genus Mustela or to any member species of the ‘weasel family.’ However, most of the time, ‘weasel’ only applies to a single species of this genus, which is the least weasel or the Mustela nivalis, by its scientific name. How does the weasel (the least weasel in this case) differ from another species included in the genus Mustela: the ermine, or Mustela erminea? Even though the least weasel and the ermine have a lot of things in common, there are significant differences between these two common members of the weasel family.

Physical Characteristics and Reproduction

One can easily distinguish a weasel from an ermine by its appearance. On average, the length of the adult ermine can reach at about 7 to 13 inches. It can be as heavy as 1-5 ounces. However, weasels are generally much smaller, measuring only 6-8 inches in length and 1-2 ounces in weight. When it comes to their fur colors, there are slight differences between the ermine and the weasel. For instance, both sport white-colored fur during the winter season, but the ermine would be easy to notice because of the tip of its tail turning black. These two species, however, have a distinction in color during the summer, even though they both turn chocolate brown. The color of the fur on the belly area of the ermine becomes yellowish to brown during the hot season, while the weasel’s belly fur changes to white combined with brownish spots.

The reproductive characteristics of weasels and ermines also have big differences. For one, ermine are pregnant for a much longer period of time (280 days) than the weasel, which is normally pregnant for only 5 weeks, specifically 34-37 days. Ermines can give birth to three to eighteen offspring for each pregnancy period while weasel moms can have one to seven young ones. Regardless of these differences, ermine and weasel mothers both care for their offspring, which are usually blind and defenseless when born.

Balance of Nature

In the process of the ecosystem, ermine and weasels both struggle to survive and stay away from their own predators. Since these two animals have dissimilar sizes, their predators are also different from the other. For instance, the ermine’s predator can be as huge and as fierce as the fox. They can also be eaten by badgers and domesticated cats. On the other hand, weasels need to worry about birds that can attack them such as the hawks and owls.

Unfortunately, weasels and ermines have been a huge problem for farmers for centuries, since both of these animals hunt domesticated fowls. Because they can be pests, farmers are practicing trap and kill methods to get rid of them. In addition to being a pest to farmers, the ermine is also hunted because of the fur’s significant use in the fashion industry. Some of the softest and most lavish winter coats created are made from the ermine’s precious fur. In contrast, the fur of the weasel is unappealing in the clothing and fashion world.

Summary:

One can easily distinguish a weasel from an ermine by its appearance. On the average, the length of the adult ermine can reach at about 7 to 13 inches. It can be as heavy as 1-5 ounces. However, the weasels are generally much smaller, measuring only 6-8 inches in length and 1-2 ounces in weight.

both sport white-colored fur during the winter season, but the ermine would be easy to notice because of the tip of its tail turning black. These two species, however, have a distinction in color during the summer, even though they both turn chocolate brown.

Ermine can give birth to three to eighteen offspring for each pregnancy period while weasel moms can have one to seven young ones.


Search DifferenceBetween.net :

Custom Search



Help us improve. Rate this post! 1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars
Loading ... Loading ...


Email This Post Email This Post : If you like this article or our site. Please spread the word. Share it with your friends/family.



See more about : , , ,

Leave a Response

Please note: comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.

Articles on DifferenceBetween.net are general information, and are not intended to substitute for professional advice. The information is "AS IS", "WITH ALL FAULTS". User assumes all risk of use, damage, or injury. You agree that we have no liability for any damages.


Protected by Copyscape Plagiarism Finder