Name: marmots are large ground squirrels that make up the genus Marmota. There are 15 different species living across Asia, Europe, and North America.
Appearance: marmots have short, thick bodies, strong claws for digging, and large teeth for gnawing vegetation. Most species have brown fur although those living in open habitat are paler, and those living forests are darker.
Size: they typically measure around 40 to 70 cm long and weigh from 2 to 8 kg.
Diet: marmots eat grasses, berries, lichens, mosses, roots, and flowers.
Did you know: they live in burrows and hibernate in them throughout the winter. In Ancient Greece, the historian Heoroduts reported strange stories of ‘gold-digging ants’. These tales are thought to have originated from golden Himalayan marmots and the tradition of local tribes to collect gold dust excavated by their burrows.
Location: marmots live in mountainous areas across Europe, Asia, and North America. Some species can be found in grassland areas in North America and the Eurasian Steppe.
Where to see marmots
According to reports submitted to WildSide, you can see marmots in the following places:
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Photo credit: Julius_Silver under a Creative Commons license from Pixabay