The Ermine has chocolate brown fur in the summer but in the winter it grows a pure white coat of moderately fine fur. Only the black tip of the tail remains the same color year round.
Ermine is found in the north temperate and frigid sectors of Eurasia and North America.
The fur is usually prepared by having the black of the tail inserted at regular intervals, so that it contrasts with the pure white of the fur.
Fur traders prize the white pelt. The fur, with or without the black spots, has been used historically for trimming ceremonial and royal garments. In England, the robes of high court judges are trimmed with ermine that stands for the perfect rectitude essential to the judge’s office.
Written by Pauline Cameron & Katie Kemsley