Fisher Cat Sounds
Fisher cat sounds are scary sounds. Perhaps the better description is harrowing sounds. They sound a bit like a person screaming when the victim of a violent attack. For people interested in cats I would guess that you realize that the fisher cat is not a cat! It is not part of the cat family.
These audio files should play on PCs (Windows) and Macs (OS):
The Fisher cat is not the fishing cat, which is a small wild cat. Slightly confusingly, the fisher cat actually looks a little bit like the Jaguarundi, which is a small wild cat with a weasel-like appearance.
The scientific name for the fisher cat is: Martes pennanti. Common names for it are: fisher, pequam, pekan and wejack1. “Fisher” is the most common it seems2.
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Difference between fisher cat and fishing cat – classification
The fisher cat is closely related to the American marten (Martes americana)3. The chart below shows the scientific classifications of the fisher cat and the fishing cat so that you can see the difference in terms of species classification:
|Fisher Cat||Fishing Cat|
The fisher is a general predator and does not specialize in catching and eating fish (seldom eats fish4) as is the case for the fishing cat. There are stories of it preying on domestic animals5, which might include cats (they are said to like house cats6). They can climb despite being a terrestrial animal (it lives mainly on the ground)7. They are said to be noctural and ferocious8.
Links to fisher cat sounds
Just below are links to two examples of these disconcerting sounds taken from YouTube videos (which I am taking as in the public domain). Clicking on these links using a PC (windows operating system) will usually lead to Windows Media Player opening. The following window should come up (an alternative is that the audio file downloads to your computer. You play it there using software on your computer. Note: these are the same sounds as played at the top of page with the audio player but you can download them to your computer.
You can then play the sound by clicking on the OK button. This starts your Windows Media Player application.
Fisher sounds 1
Fisher sounds 2
Red FOX call (please note that this is a very similar sound)
Where do you find the fisher cat?
This map shows you:
Modified map published under Wikimedia license. Author: Photoist
What do the sounds mean?
The sound is loud, which implies that it is intended to travel over a long distance. There is no reference to the sound or reasons for the sound on major sites about species. It is almost cert ainly a mating call and/or a territorial call. Apparently people have seen the fisher scream before and after a kill9.
From fisher cat sounds to Cat sounds
5 Fisher Cat Screech dot com website
6 Fisher Cat Screech dot com website
8 Fisher Cat Screech dot com website
I was hunting one evening and saw what I thought was a juvenile black panther or black cougar or the biggest ferrel cat of all time. The tail was longer than its body and looked to be at least 20 lbs. if not larger. After seeing pictures of the fisher cat I was sure that’s what it was. The pictures I saw were of grown men holding up super large cats that they harvested. However, you say they don’t get larger than 13 lbs. So, do you know of fisher cats growing to 30lbs. or more?
We also have fishers in howell nj. Did not know what sound was at first. Recently moved about 6 miles and heard it again. Dont know if its the same fisher or there are more.
We have Fisher cats here in Pennsylvania as well. The range on the map does go far enough south.
Thank you for the great info, well presented. One basic is missing the size and weight…
Sorry about the omission. Males weigh 8–13 lb and females 4–6 lb. This puts them in the same size bracket as the domestic cat.
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