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Last updated: 03/03/2017
IMAGE - Pékans
The fisher
The fisher – or pecan – is part of our region’s native wildlife. The fisher is not listed as an endangered species but NatureServe has ranked the species at high risk.

A member of the Mustelidae family which includes the mink and the ermine, the fisher has brown fur with gold or silver markings on its head. Adults measure between 80 to 112 centimetres from head to tail. They produce an average litter of three babies, usually in March or April.

The fisher is found throughout Canada and in the northern United States. The adult male occupies a home range of about 20 square kilometers. In southern Québec, the home range size is approximately 9.2 sq. km for males and 5.4 sq. km for females. This solitary animal prefers mature forests with access to water and avoids open areas. It is typically nocturnal but can also be active during the day.

The fisher is a year-round hunter. While it feeds mostly on birds and small mammals such as rodents and porcupines, it also eats reptiles, carcasses and fruit.

Due to the loss and fragmentation of its habitat, the fisher sometimes ventures into urban areas in search of food. Cohabitation between humans and fishers is possible provided that the animals are treated with respect and that precautions are taken to limit interaction. To avoid attracting fishers (and all other wild animals) to residential areas:
  • access to garbage and pet food must be restricted;

  • household pets must be kept inside especially at dusk and during the night.
Fishers are an important part of our native wildlife. The Ministry of Wildlife (MDDEFP and MRN) points out that they are no threat to humans. Priority is given to protect native wildlife species like the fisher in order to preserve the balance required to maintain biodiversity. Free-roaming household pets tend to upset this balance. Therefore it is imperative that residents act responsibly by keeping their household pets inside, especially at night.
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1960, chemin Sainte-Angélique, Saint-Lazare (Québec), J7T 3A3
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