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If a marten has nested on your property, the troublemaker will make itself known through clearly audible noises. Being able to interpret these correctly makes identification and localization much easier.

In a nutshell

  • Martens can only be heard at certain times of the day and due to a wide variety of situations
  • Martens scream loudly and shrilly when they fight for territory or when they are being hunted
  • if cornered, they hiss menacingly
  • in the house, martens are very quiet except for their movement noises
  • Offspring makes the biggest noise in the attic


Marten noises can be heard quite rarely, since the furry loners are predators. They hunt their prey and for this reason need to be quiet. For this reason, only special situations make a marten scream:

  • turf wars
  • pairing
  • Escape from animals or humans

The screams can occur throughout the day, although it can be particularly loud at night. If your dog or cat is in the garden at this time and you suddenly hear a high-pitched scream, your pet has probably found a marten. Recall your pet immediately, as wildlife can injure your four-legged family member. If you hear marten noises throughout the day, another animal found the burrow and the furry troublemaker needs to defend itself. The screams can best be described with the following keywords:

  • shrill
  • very loud
  • high
  • reminiscent of cats

Notice: The screams don't last long. The animals find loud noises extremely unpleasant as they cause stress.


Other sounds made by the animals include a menacing hiss. These marten noises are triggered when the marten feels threatened and can no longer find an escape route. A typical example is, for example, large dogs or when the animals are caught by a professional. The hissing is very aggressive and is often accompanied by a growl when no danger is directly affecting the marten. If the marten is caught, it grumbles at first until someone approaches the cage. At a certain point, the growl turns into a violent hiss, similar to a threatening cat, only a little louder.

in the house

If a marten has nested in your four walls, you have to reckon with completely different noises. The animals can almost never be recognized in the house by the sounds already described, but by a variety of other noises. These include:

  • Sounds from paws (tapping)
  • rumble
  • rustle
  • gnaw (rarely)
  • scratch (less often)

Due to the animals' nocturnal activity, you will hear them mainly from dusk to dawn, with a peak over the night. In most cases it is a single animal that has chosen your roof as a nesting site. Depending on the season, there are more martens, which increases the intensity of the noise. The offspring in particular are extremely noisy, since the mother of the young marten animals teaches them the most important survival skills. During this period, the size of the marten family increases significantly, although the father does not take care of them. An overview of the periods:

  • Mating season (2 animals): July to August
  • Offspring: March to autumn

Notice: The ceiling height has a major impact on the perception of marten noises. If you own an attic apartment, you will almost always hear the animals, while you will be less disturbed in rooms over 250 centimeters high.

frequently asked Questions

Do martens bark?

No, martens don't bark. Despite the extensive noises that the small predators can produce, classic barking sounds are not one of them. If you hear barking on your property at night that isn't from your four-legged friend, it can only be two animals. Either you hear a strange dog or foxes trying to mate or drive away a rival.

How can martens be distinguished from rats and mice?

The marten noises in the house are not always so easy to distinguish from other animals. Mice and rats in particular are often mistaken for the furry troublemakers. Because of this, you need to pay attention to when the noises are heard in the attic. If they can be heard throughout the day, they are mice and rats. Martens only make a racket at night.

How can martens be distinguished from cats?

If corresponding noises are heard in the evening or at night, many cat owners wonder whether it is their own house tiger. The problem: cats move about the house almost silently, unless they are hunting, fighting or playing. If this is not usual for your cat at these times, you must assume a marten infestation.

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