Wolverines require a range between 200 and 500 square kilometres. Encroaching roads, development and agriculture interrupt these areas and bring Wolverines in contact with people. Since the early 1900s, Wolverine populations have declined significantly because of trapping, hunting and poisoning. Because it lives in arctic regions, there is a high risk of disruption to this species from climate change.
Wolverines are formidable hunters and scavengers, and are among the largest members of the weasel family. With a reputation for aggression and fearlessness, these strong, stocky animals are the top predators in some areas of in their range. They look rather like a small bear with a long tail.
The long, dense fur of Wolverines has a water-repellent quality that helps the animals survive in rain, ice and snow. Their coats are dark reddish-brown with yellowish stripes down each side. Other adaptations to their cold environment include small ears and large, flat, five-toed paws for walking in snow.
Wolverines live and hunt alone and largely avoid each other. They will eat anything they can catch or scavenge, and can crush bone and carry large chunks of meat in their strong jaws. They are mostly nocturnal but may be active at dusk and dawn. Males are up to 30 per cent larger than females. Wolverines live for around four to six years in the wild.
After mating, the fertilised embryo is not immediately implanted, but is delayed for six months. Female Wolverines build a snow den for their young and give birth to up to six kits between February and April. Mother Wolverines care for their young until they are weaned.