sable

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sable,

species of martenmarten,
name for carnivorous, largely arboreal mammals (genus Martes) of the weasel family, widely distributed in North America, Europe, and central Asia. Martens are larger, heavier-bodied animals than weasels, with thick fur and bushy tails.
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, Martes zibellina, found in Siberia, N European Russia, and N Finland. This carnivorous mammal is highly valued for its thick, soft fur, which is dark brown or black, sometimes with white underparts and sometimes flecked with silver. Unrestricted hunting for several centuries has exterminated the sable in some regions and dangerously reduced it in others; it now survives chiefly in the mountains of the northernmost parts of its former range. Protection is now afforded in parts of Russia, and it is raised on farms. The fur of the American marten, M. americana, sometimes called the American sable, also commands a price, although not as high as that of the true sable. Sables are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Mammalia, order Carnivora, family Mustelidae.

Sable

 

(Martes zibellina), a valuable furbearing animal of the family Mustelidae. The general coloration ranges from light cinnamon to dark chestnut; there is a yellowish spot on the chest. The body is 43–53 cm long and weighs 0.9–1.9 kg. The females are considerably smaller than the males.

The sable is distributed in the forest zone from the Severnaia Dvina and Mezen’ rivers to the shores of the Pacific Ocean. Its range includes Karagin Island, Bol’shoi Shantar Island, the Kuril Islands, and Sakhalin Island. Outside the USSR the sable is found on Hokkaido Island (Japan) and in the northern regions of Korea, China, and Mongolia. There are several geographical forms, including small Far Eastern and Transbakalian forms and large Kamchatkan forms.

Sables live primarily in cedar and spruce-fir forests but are also encountered in pine and larch forests. They are terrestrial animals, climbing trees only rarely and finding shelter in the spaces between tree roots, in rocky debris, and in hollows in dead wood. Sables are active at various times of the day. They make seasonal vertical migrations into the mountains, and every five to seven years there are mass migrations over distances as great as 150 km as a result of an insufficient food supply and a decrease in population. Sables are omnivorous, feeding primarily on small rodents, the seeds of cedar and Japanese stone pine, whitebeam fruits, and red and bog whortleberries.

Mating occurs in July, and after a gestation period of 273 days—with a latent phase—three or four (rarely five) young are born. The young weigh about 30 g at birth, reaching adult size in four months. Sexual maturity is attained in the second year of life. There are two molts—one in spring and one in autumn.

Rapacious hunting has led to a decrease in the sable population, a decrease that began in the late 17th century and has continued for more than 200 years. Between 1930 and 1970 the sable population was restored to a total of 600,000–800,000. Of this number, 200,000 are caught annually. Sables are hunted commercially with rifles and dogs or in deadfalls, snares, or spring traps. Sables are often raised in cages on fur farms.

REFERENCES

Timofeev, V. V., and V. N. Nadeev. SoboV. Moscow, 1955.
Dul’keit, G. D. Voprosy ekologii i kolichestvennogo acheta sobolia. Moscow, 1957.

N. N. BAKEEV

sable

[′sā·bəl]
(vertebrate zoology)
Martes zibellina. A carnivore of the family Mustelidae; a valuable fur-bearing animal, quite similar to the American marten.

sable, sable pencil

A fine paintbrush made of hair of the tail of the sable.

sable

fur of this mammal produces luxurious, soft fur coats. [Western Culture: Misc.]
See: Luxury

sable

black fur represents repentance. [Heraldry: Halberts, 37]

sable

1. a marten, Martes zibellina, of N Asian forests, with dark brown luxuriant fur
2. 
a. the highly valued fur of this animal
b. (as modifier): a sable coat
3. American sable the brown, slightly less valuable fur of the American marten, Martes americana
4. the colour of sable fur: a dark brown to yellowish-brown colour
5. of the colour of sable fur

Sable

Cape
1. a cape at the S tip of Florida: the southernmost point of continental US
2. the southernmost point of Nova Scotia, Canada
References in classic literature ?
There was a sharp cry--and the dagger dropped gleaming upon the sable carpet, upon which, instantly afterwards, fell prostrate in death the Prince Prospero.
The other Kafirs we left with instructions to skin the lion and the sable antelope, and to cut up the latter.
Le Lac est separe de la Mediterranee par un barrage en sable a la fin de laquelle se situent les detroits de Zaranik et d'Abou Salah.
MARATHON MAN: Graham Nicoll, who is taking part in the Marathon des Sables event - running 156 miles through the Sahara Desert
Le Marathon des sables est une epreuve de course a pied de haut niveau qui a lieu durant une semaine dans le desert.
Aramex (DFM: ARMX), one of the world's leading total transportation solutions providers, today announced its veteran runners, Salameh Al Aqra and Mohammed Sweity finished second and tenth at the 2008 Morocco Marathon des Sables, a grueling six-day, 243 kilometer endurance footrace across the Moroccan Desert.
Our commitment to educating the youth and public about the value of hunting and the role it plays in our conservation management is a vital part of what the Sables are all about.
Chicagoland Mercury Sable buyers soon will have the opportunity to check the production of the new 2000 Sable up close and in person.
18, 1997--Ford Motor Company celebrated an important milestone in its relationship with Hewlett-Packard Company Monday -- the upcoming delivery of the 100,000th Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable to HP's corporate fleet.
Founded in 1984, the Sables recognize the importance of youth in the preservation of the shooting sports and direct their efforts toward educating women, teachers, youth leaders and young people about our outdoor heritage.
For 1996, LS-series Sables will be powered by the new 3.
9 /PRNewswire/ -- Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) announced today a customer cash incentive program for Ford Taurus and Mercury Sable as a response to marketing programs already offered by other mid-size segment competitors.