We all remember the famous advert for chocolate wrapped in tinfoil, or the marmot from a famous TV channel who plays film extracts... The marmot, a wild animal reintroduced into Cantal, is appealing because of its sympathetic nature. How do you recognise it? Where can you see it? What behaviour should you adopt? Here are a few tips to help you spot marmots on the Cantal Volcano.
The marmot is a small animal measuring 57 to 90 cm, weighing 4 to 7 kg, which lives for around 15 to 18 years and gives birth to its young in June and July.
It can be recognised by its distinctive whistle, which is a warning signal in the event of danger. It also has large teeth to defend itself against its enemies.
The marmot hibernates from October to March/April in its cosy nest at the bottom of its burrow.
At the start of spring, it makes its first appearance outside. Now is the time to play, bask, sleep in the sun and build up new reserves in preparation for next winter!
Nevertheless, it remains vigilant: in the event of danger, it warns its companions with a more or less intense whistle, depending on the danger or the approaching enemy, and everyone returns to the shelter of the burrow.
The best times are undoubtedly in the mornings or evenings, from spring to late summer.
Where can you see them?
Colonies of marmots are regularly seen at the foot of Puy Mary and towards the Plomb du Cantal. In general, when hiking in the mountains of the Massif, keep your eyes peeled and stay alert for a chance to see them!
Maximise your chances!
With a mountain guide! An expert in hiking and its related aspects, the guide will be able to show you how to observe this wildlife.
It will be more difficult to spot them on your own. Nevertheless, here are a few tips to maximise your chances of success.
Adopt the right attitude when heading out into the mountains:
Watching the wildlife
Marmot in Cantal