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Weasels and Minks Anyone?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by ncalchicken, Dec 12, 2015.

  1. varidgerunner

    varidgerunner Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I saw about all of the possible configurations of electric fencing deployed, never saw one work on mink. You would have to have electric netting with one inch squares and alternating hot and ground wires. They hit it so fast and pop through a hole so small that if even if the shock was occurring, they would be on the other side before they knew what was happening. They have impressive vertical skills as well, I've seen them jump out of the water a couple feet, with a two pound trout in their mouth. Without any extra weight they can jump onto the base of a tree easily three or four feet from the ground. One of the things that I did notice, as regards electric net, when they caught fish, and they hit the fish against the fence, they dropped it and went and caught another, eventually they made it through with a fish between zaps. There would be half a dozen fish lying on the ground at the fence.
     
  2. Folly's place

    Folly's place Overrun With Chickens

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    Impressive! I rely on having a very safe coop and run, and daytime free ranging only. We've seen weasels here, but only one bird killed by one in decades. Mary
     
  3. hayley3

    hayley3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    @varidgerunner
    Have you actually observed a mink/weasel climb 1/8 inch hardware cloth that is 48 inches high? If so do you have pictures or a video of that? I realize they can climb well, esp things they can grip onto, such as a tree, but I cannot visualize how they could climb something that they cannot get their nails into. 1/8 inch wire is pretty tiny.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2015
  4. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    A mink's claws will easily grip a 1/8 inch hole. Their claws are comparable in size to a cat's claws.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2015
  5. birds4kids

    birds4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would agree that hardware cloth will only help a predator like these climb so it would have to be up and over. To shock a mink I am imagining hardware cloth as ground inside chicken wire that is hot. They would nose through the chicken wire and get shocked by the chicken wire ground. Hardware cloth would still have to be all over but a shock or two should stop them from probing for weaknesses.
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2015
  6. varidgerunner

    varidgerunner Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Watched mink many times climb 1/8 1/4 and half inch hardware cloth as well as flat aluminum with tiny holes. Never shot a video. If you can't see how they can do it, then you have never looked closely at a minks toes.
     
  7. varidgerunner

    varidgerunner Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Think aquatic squirrel.
     
  8. birds4kids

    birds4kids Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Squirrel is a good way to give someone unfamiliar an idea. If we want to go pop culture temperament is more like a honey badger. But climb run and squeeze through little places like a squirrel.
     
  9. hayley3

    hayley3 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    No I've never seen a mink despite being surrounded by creeks and rivers. Although I did take a look just now online and the claws seemed big in the picture but never seen one up close.

    Okay so I read this : A baffle of sheet metal at least 300mm (1') deep attached along the top of the fence will stop mink climbing over.

    I'm assuming they mean for it to stick out like they use to keep out squirrels from bird feeders but how would you do that, I wonder. Or would just attaching sheet metal prevent them from going further up?
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2015
  10. RachaelR32

    RachaelR32 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Mink will go through 2" holes as if they weren't even there. You need a smaller mesh. They will climb over so either you need to put mesh over the roof as well, or you need electric fencing at the top. I've known people loose birds in a roofed run as the mink or pine martin got under the corrugated roof and in that way. (I'm in ireland so we have both since mink were introduced).

    For electric fencing at the top to keep mink out I would try the configuration suggested in this leaflet to keep pine martins out as they are very similar.

    http://www.npws.ie/sites/default/files/publications/pdf/VWT Pine Marten leaflet.pdf
     

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