‘Twas a beautiful day, temperature in the 60s, crystal clear, with a gentle breeze and we were riding our bikes on the Pine Creek Rail Trail. There are a few benches along the trail at irregular intervals, some with good views of the surrounding hills or overlooking the stream. We were sitting on one of the benches, taking a break, when my wife saw a mink in the water.
The mink was swimming and diving like a small otter; then it would climb out onto a rock, dive back into the water and occasionally swim into the patches of emergent vegetation along the shore.
It spent the majority of its time swimming rapidly underwater seemingly at random, but probably in pursuit of small fish. Once it emerged with something dark in its jaws, probably a crayfish, but ate it so quickly that we couldn’t tell what it was.
It eventually climbed onto a rock long enough for me to get a few photos before it dove back into the water, swam rapidly downstream and disappeared
Whenever it was on the surface I tried squeaking like an injured small animal in an effort to get the mink to hold still for a moment or even to come closer - to no avail.
Other mink have been much more cooperative and reacted to squeaks. This one even came closer in spite of the fact that it was already carrying prey –
Or this one that crossed our son’s partially frozen pond in response to my squeaking –