While on that same TFN nature walk we stopped on the path above the jumble of limestone chunks helping reduce erosion around the inner marina bay to look at some grebes, coots and goldeneye. Suddenly a long, slender, sleek four-footed forager popped up to inspect us while on its prowls. It was too small to be an otter, too brown to be a winter ermine, and too big to be a weasel: It was a mink.
Feisty Weasel-Lookalike Pops Up Unabashed to Forage Despite Paparazzi with Cameras and Binoculars
There were about 20 people staring at this gorgeous creature as it darted into crevices and rolled back up and out. It moved very quickly in ripples like water over the rocks. It actually came towards the group first but shied off about 5m away.
Someone Spotted Wearing Luxurious Mink Coat at Colonel Sam Smith Park in Toronto ON
Luckily for us, who got to watch it, and for the mink, it’s no longer common to trap wild mink for their fur. Mink coats are noticeably less popular than they were in the last century. And farm-raised mink fur is now the most common the source of coats for people. (Nova Scotia, for instance, produced 700,000 mink pelts in 2003, according to the government of Nova Scotia agriculture website.) That could partly explain the lack of fear shown by this well-clad hunter.
You could see, even from a distance, that the fur was thick and it looked sleek and soft. The animal actually looked larger in diameter than what I remember mink looking like. I think that’s because this is my first “winter” mink. This one still had its extra warm coat to make life among the icy limestock blocks bearable.
Lots of Opportunities to Eat
This mink was probably a healthy weight and size for a reason: There’s lots of food for an aggressive, curious hunter at Colonel Sam Smith Park. Between Canada Goose and Mallard duck eggs and chicks, frogs, fish, small mammals and the occasional sandwich dropped by picnickers, there’s lots available to feed a hungry mustelid.
This Mink Was Solo
According to the PEI Dept of Agriculture and Forestry website, mink have kits in April or May. So it was too early to expect to see a Mama mink teaching her youngsters the finer arts of the hunt. We did see, however, another mink on rocks on the far shore, so there’s a good chance that someone will have 4-6 mini mink in the coming months!
I’ll have to try to go back later this year and see if we can spot them.
Have you seen any mink that weren’t around a human’s shoulders? What were they doing? Please share your experiences with a comment.