Congratulation to Kyle Tansley for winning the May 2020 Photo-observation of the Month. He captured this American Mink moving her kits from one den to another. “She was moving her babies from one den to another,” wrote Kyle. “When I arrived, I was told she had already moved two. I saw her move two more.”
Mink dens typically consist of long burrows near water in banks, holes under logs, tree stumps, or roots and hollow trees. They are typically about four inches in diameter and may run 10 feet and reach 2 to 3 feet deep when dug by a mink. But, they also use burrows dug by muskrats, badgers and skunks. The nesting chamber is at the end a tunnel, and is about a foot in diameter and lined with grass and sedge stems and feathers. The dens are characterized by a large number of entrances and twisting passages. There can be up to eight exits. These kits will stay with their mother until fall when they will leave to establish their own territories. Learn more about American Mink and see a map of reported occurrences at the Vermont Atlas of Life.
Visit the Vermont Atlas of Life on iNaturalist where you can vote for the winner this month by clicking the ‘fav’ star on your favorite photo-observation. Make sure you get outdoors and record the biodiversity around you, then submit your discoveries and you could be a winner!