Back in high school, I spent a lot of time tromping around in the woods in New Hampshire. In the winter, I’d sometimes go out tracking for hours, and my favorite animals to track were always mustelids. I think it’s a tie between mink and fisher. Mink were fun because in addition to the challenge of tracking something that’s as comfortable swimming as it is walking, when they came to big hills, they’d slide down them on their bellies. Sometimes they’d run back up the hill and do it again, or if there was a gully, they’d move down it by running up one side, then sliding down it, and running up the other side, zig-zagging back and forth. Fisher didn’t slide so much, but they also tended not to stick so close to streams, and they were more likely to lead me to other animals. Follow a fisher for long enough, and the odds were good I’d find something else. They also had their own way to play in the snow. If it was deep enough, they’d run up a tree, and jump off, leaving a perfect spread-eagle hole in the snow. It always looked like something out of a cartoon.
I tend to think of the Tayra as the South American version of the fisher. I don’t know how closely they’re related, beyond sharing the same family, but it seems like they occupy a similar niche in their respective habitats.