Mink on Mull


I was lucky enough to spot the mink as it emerged from the sea next to the Craignure campsite. I looked at the mink, and the mink looked at me and said "Oh, bother!", turned, and ran off carrying its eel. After a while, we spotted it underneath the overhang of a rock.

The mink was not to be cheated out of its meal, and it chomped on the eel steadily, with four of us watching. When it had finished, it calmly set off along the shoreline, brushing off the slime from the eel on seaweed as it went.

I kept pace with it as it went, which it clearly resented, wanting to get to cover inland. As we progressed along the shoreline, the sandpipers, rock pipits and oystercatchers all recognised the menace in this diminutive predator and mobbed it loudly.

It took to water at one stage to get away from me, but it was spotted by a gull which swooped at it several times. Each time, the mink dived under water to avoid the gull.

Every now and then, the mink had a good look at us, apparently without fear, and then carried on along the shore. Eventually, it disappeared from view. After a while, we were alerted by the fuss created by an oystercatcher further down the shore as it scampered across the pebbles and into thick cover.


This was the longest time for which I have had one of these fierce little predators under observation. It reminded me strongly of the polecats, having the same qualities of cuteness and ferocity. A pity that it has such an effect on our indigenous wildlife, particularly the water voles which I used to watch regularly beside our river, but are now long gone.


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All text and graphics © Pat Bennett 1996-2005

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