Martes zibellina (Linnaeus, 1758) is a mustelid commonly called the sable. It is a widespread Siberian species that inhabits a spectrum of localities in the mountain and plain taiga, and also coniferous and deciduous forests in 6 countries. Main resources and largest part of its distribution area are located in Russia. M. zibellina is common in many zoos of large cities and breeding populations are maintained in fur farms in the Russian Federation, Finland, and probably other countries. M. zibellina is comparatively well studied, primarily because of its value as a furbearer. The number of individuals is estimated in the range of 1.1–1.3 million and recent estimates of annual production (after 2000) are 300,000–400,000 pelts from the wild. Annual sales at auctions from fur farms are about 10,000–20,000 pelts.

Author notes

Associate editor of this account was David M. Leslie, Jr. Alfred L. Gardner and Ryan Norris reviewed portions of the synonymies. Editors were Meredith J. Hamilton and Virginia Hayssen.