An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Mink Meanderings

2-5-14 mink with tail dragging2 IMG_2152As these wet footprints and tail drag marks indicate, mink are excellent swimmers, and spend a great deal of time in all seasons foraging in and along streams and ponds. As a rule, all weasels can often be found close to water, as they drink often, though relatively little at a time. But mink do far more than drink water – they find much of their prey, including crayfish, frogs and fish, in it and are very well equipped to capture them. Mink can swim underwater to a depth of 18 feet and they can swim as far as 100 yards. Look for their tracks going in and out of openings in the ice that covers much of a stream’s surface this time of year.

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2 responses

  1. We see mink around here as well. It is an amazing testament to the warmth of their fur coats when they zip in and out of the frigid, icy water with nary a shiver! I was standing near our waterfall once and one came within three feet of me as it meandered upstream, I don’t think it saw me at first because I was so still, but once it recognized me as animal, zoom! it was gone! Do you know why do I notice more of them as roadkill in the fall?

    February 7, 2014 at 6:01 pm

  2. Hi Eliza, I’m afraid I don’t know why you see more roadkilled mink in the fall. They breed in late February and March, so they’re not roaming more than usual in the fall…unless it’s young of the year dispersing. I’ve never been that close to a mink — lucky you. There are good reasons not to take your dog on treks with you as I do!

    February 7, 2014 at 6:26 pm

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