American Mink

Yesterday late in the afternoon, I saw this little mink pop it’s head up at the edge of the salt marsh. It started racing around in a very purposeful manner keeping it’s head and nose down as if it was frantically searching for something. Perhaps it had previously stashed some food in a den among the rocks and could not recall the locations of all the stashes. It clearly had a mission in mind though because the odd and interesting thing was that it ignored me the entire time. As you can see especially in the last photo, the mink was practically right at my feet and did not seem to care at all that I was there. 

Mink in the Salt Marsh

Mink in the Salt Marsh

Mink in the Salt Marsh

Mink in the Salt Marsh

Mink in the Salt Marsh

Mink in the Salt Marsh

94 thoughts on “American Mink

  1. …. A.K.A. Stretch Rat. He reminds me of the days I kept a business (group) of ferrets. If minks are anything like ferrets, they don’t know the meaning of the word “fear”. Come to think of it, they don’t know the meaning of a lot of words. I wonder what your resident eagles think of this little fur-ball.

    • They (like squirrels) don’t know the meaning of ‘there’s a car coming, watch out.’ I have seen them run out into traffic with total disregard.
      I thought of the eagles when I saw this guy scamper out into the marsh at low tide. The same marsh the eagles so often stake out. Sadly I suspect this little mink does not have a long life in his future.

      • …. Actually, eagles aren’t that great a threat; although eagles and owls can and will grab juveniles. Mink, ferrets, otters and such are members of the weasel family. Almost impossible to break their necks, so if an eagle makes the mistake of bringing a full grown mink to its nest, it will have a dramatic and painful fight on its hands – er – talons. Coyotes, otters (and Fords) are the biggest threat. And society ladies, of course.

  2. We had a mink living in an (unused) stove pipe in Utah. The brother-in-law fed it by hand. I was afraid he’d lose some fingers, but didn’t. My husband used to joke about a woman who asked how many times you could skin them… the answer being “only once, since they didn’t like it much,” 😀

    • I would not want one to get hold of my fingers that’s for sure.
      I much prefer watching this little guy running around wild in nature then a person wearing a coat made from their hides.

      • I agree with the running wild bit, but they had a lot of mink farms out where we lived. I suspect our guy might have been an escapee. They are so cute. Surely there are much better alternatives to wearing their precious hides.

    • I did find a mink! And a cute one! Funny you mention petting him, when he got that close it was like having my cat walk by me. I almost did find myself reaching down to give him a little scritch between the ears. 🙂

  3. Beautiful creature, Phil, but they’ve caused havoc over here in the UK – lots of them were released from fur farms in the 80s and have devastated our native wildlife. I used to see them a lot on the river bank when I was a coxswain for a rowing team in the late 80s. They’re very beautiful.

    • Thanks Lucy they are quite cute little animals but big eaters too. I know they have devasted many areas.
      Lately we have been seeing quite a few coyotes and almost no rabbits or feral cats anymore and fewer minks and deer.

  4. Hi Phil, from Lucy’s mum! Living in the country in Herefordshire, we have seen the devastation to our wildlife caused by mink. They are totally fearless and will clear a pond of ducks within days. Not seeing so many now, thankfully, although have to admit they are so attractive and agree with you in that their beautiful fur looks much better on them than any woman! Lovely pictures again, thank you!

    • Thank you very much Maggie, I truly appreciate your interest and kind words about the photos.
      I know the mink have caused problems in many areas. Our population of them in our area now is fairly low, so we are not experiencing and problems. Hopefully it remains that way with a nice balance that works for everyone.

  5. They’re adorable ! You know Phil, you make me jealous. Not only because your photographs are stunning (I’m getting over that very slowly, VERY slowly) but because you live so close to all these wonderful creatures. Thank you so much for sharing this.

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