Yesterday about 10 a.m., while swapping out media cards and setting more trail cameras, a nice mink crossed in front of the van. I turned the key off, grabbed the camera from the passenger seat, and got out. The mink had bounded into a roadside pine thicket. I had no idea if it had kept going or was watching me. I leaned against the front of the van, camera up, and started to lip squeak. A couple of minutes later I saw the mink coming toward me in the brush. It came within 20 yards and made a semi-circle around me, then moved away. I can’t be certain but I believe it had circled to get my scent, as the wind was blowing toward the spot where it finally turned away. The two photos of this mink on this post were taken with a handheld 300mm lense.
Actually seeing a wild mink in my area is rare. I see maybe one or two a year, if that. This made my morning.
Later that day at about 4 p.m., after taking the Martin Byler crew home after their day’s work, I saw another mink. As I was driving at about 40 miles an hour, I saw something moving in a cut cornfield. It was moving toward the road, so I slowed down. it was another mink. It left the cornfield and stopped on some cut grass on the other side of a roadside ditch. By this time, I was across from it and just sitting in the running van. We stared at each other for a few minutes and it dropped down into the ditch, presumably to go through the culvert. Unfortunately, I didn’t have my camera with me … and this was a much better photo op, being much closer and in the open.
Two wild mink sighted the same day was a first for me. I am not counting a family group of five that Kris, her mom, and I had cross in front of us one Sunday morning. Yesterday’s two mink were about six hours, two watersheds, and three miles apart. A winter storm of colder temperatures and snow flurries was moving in. I attribute these sightings to the stormy weather. Mink are known to be more active when the weather is nasty. Regardless of the reason, it was a great day!