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Common muskrat Ondatra zibethica


A large aquatic rodent (Ondata zibethicus) native to North America, but introduced to Eurasia in the 1900s. Muskrats have thick gold-, black- or brown-color fur with lighter colors on its belly. The short, soft underfur is heavily overlaid with long, stiff, dark guard hairs. Muskrat furs were popular for coats in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Muskrat furs are sometimes sheared and dyed to resemble seal fur.

Synonyms and Related Terms

Ondatra zibethicus; musquash; marsh rabbit; river mink; Hudson seal (sheared and dyed fur); Bisamratte (Deut.); Bisam (Deut.); rat musqué (Fr.); muskusrat (Ned.); bisamrotte (Nor.); pi¿mak (Pol.);

Additional Images

Sources Checked for Data in Record

  • Encyclopedia Britannica, Comment: "muskrat." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2005. Encyclopædia Britannica Premium Service 21 Jan. 2005 .
  • Edward Reich, Carlton J. Siegler, Consumer Goods: How to Know and Use Them, American Book Company, New York City, 1937

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