American Mink – Fishing on Thin Ice

Posted on by Kathie Fife
An American Mink feeding on fresh fish kill.

An American Mink feeding on fresh fish kill. Click on the photo to open the gallery slideshow.

I think one of the best things about nature photography is that you never know what you will see when you go out for the day.

[I apologize for the large gap between the slideshow and text below. I’m working on trying to fix it – thanks for your patience]

Today was a very cold day; the coldest one we’ve had so far this season.  I really didn’t want to be out for very long, so I picked a short and easy hike.

Walking by the edge of a meadow, I noticed movement out of the corner of my eye.  I stopped, stood still, and scanned the area.  I only saw a scattering of small dead logs. But, then one of those logs  moved.  It was actually a mink feeding on a fish on a thin slice of ice.  I was quite a distance away, and the mink didn’t seem bothered that I was standing there watching it bop around along the edge of the ice.  It dove into the water and within a few seconds it surfaced with another fish.

I started shooting. The sound of my camera clicking away at 7fps spooked the mink and it ran for cover into an old abandoned beaver hut.  Still very curious, it poked it’s head out several times through holes in the hut.  It’s fear didn’t last long, and it swiftly ran back to it’s fish dinner. The slideshow you see here is a series of shots I got in about five minutes.  Since I was so far away at times, some of the photos are, obviously, a heavy crop. This is a bummer since some of these could be spectacular as large prints! Hey, Christmas is coming up in a few weeks, so maybe Santa will bring me a really nice telephoto lens in my stocking 🙂

Anyway, I had a great time watching the mink, and I was lucky to come across such a fun animal to photograph on a cold winter day.

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