Monday, July 05, 2010

Morning Suprise: Mink Encounter

Deciding to accompany Willard for a morning wildlife photoshoot at the meadows, I arrived there as he was finishing setting up his equipment.  Soon after settling in comfortably I noticed a cottontail rabbit running away from us down the access road.  After going maybe twenty yards it made a 90 degree turn disappearing into the high grass.  Thinking nothing of it I looked back to the meadow only to hear Willard exclaim "Look at That!"  I turned to see a mink running down the path the rabbit had followed.  Swinging the camera into position I was ready when the mink paused where the rabbit had made the turn.


In a moment the mink figured out the rabbit's evasive move and again took off on its scent trail.


 A few minutes later movement to my left caught my attention and I turned just in time to see the rabbit running full out pass by directly behind us.  The rabbit was in full panic mode as it sped past only a few feet away disappearing into the old barn and only a couple of seconds later the mink followed in pursuit.

The action was breaking so fast that I was unable to achieve focus as the mink rushed our position!



When only a few yards away the mink suddenly became aware of our presence; stopping momentarily before reversing direction as rapidly as it had approached.  Here you can see the initial escape leap as the mink began fleeing.

Thinking of this encounter I believe that the little rabbit owes its life to our presence this morning as there is absolutely nowhere that a rabbit could go where the mink could not follow.  And then again looking at the encounter another way I guess the mink could blame us for its hunger pangs brought on by a missed meal.

I was fully intending to continue today with yesterday's wetland encounters but after this heart racing encounter with a creature so rarely seen I simply had to share this extraordinary encounter today.




13 comments:

bab006 said...

I have never seen a mink in the wild before. Lucky you.

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

That is amazing.The blurred shot shows the fast action.
Blessings,Ruth

Susan said...

Great shots and story too, thanks for sharing!

HANNIBAL said...

I can't imagine your excitement! What a fantastic moment! You were so lucky to have that play out right in front of you! Last time I saw a mink, it was barely dawn, I was driving to work, had my headlights on a mink eating out of a candy wrapper, reached for my camera which usually rides shotgun, and discovered I had taken it out the previous day for a passenger on a trip. It has been my only "more-than-2-seconds" encounter to date!

Chris said...

Wow, same for me i have never seen one in the wild nature. How lucky you were... i love the two last shots a lot, they are very funny ;-)

JimB said...

nice capture!!!

Adrienne in Ohio said...

I am glad for this post. Last summer, one of these ran in front of my car. Thankfully, we were in a PA state park where the speed limit was only 20 mph, so I was able to miss it. But I wished I could have had time to take a photo. I wanted to see it closer. And now I have. Thanks!

Bird Girl said...

What a cool capture that was!

Elaine said...

What an exciting encounter! You were definitely in the right place at the right time, and luckily you were ready with your camera.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Coy, how wonderful these are and so glad you are still seeing this wonderful creature, such beauty in it's face~

Brad Myers said...

Great encounter Coy. I have never seen mink in the wild, I know they are in the Wildwood area but I have not been lucky yet.

√ Abraham Lincoln said...

I got pretty worked up with excitement just reading this. You seemed to be able to keep your wits about you to get some remarkable pictures.

How about Willard? Did he get this as a movie?

photowannabe said...

Totally amazing. That's something I have never seen. It is an exciting story you have told.