The Everglades Mink

minkThe Everglades is home to the Everglades Mink, hence the name! This small member of the weasel family is one of three types of minks found in Florida. The Everglades Mink happens to be the only one that lives in south Florida. They are semi-aquatic, carnivorous and also related to otters, ferrets, badgers, and martens.

An Everglades Mink has chocolate brown fur, a small head and tiny black eyes and ears. Its legs are short, it has a pointed muzzle, five partially webbed toes on each food but it has a long bushy tail. A mink’s feet help them swim easily in water while they search for food. A mink also releases an unpleasant-smelling liquid, similar to a skunks; it does this as a warning and also a marker for other minks to know of its presence. It doesn’t spray this liquid, unlike s skunk, but does release it out of fear. The mix will also squeal, snarl, and hiss if it is frightened. This mink can grow up to 25 inches long.

Like stated before, its home is in the Everglades, also including shallow freshwater marshes and swamps of the Fakahatchee Strand, Big Cypress Swamp.

Despite their small size, Everglade minks are known to grab prey larger than themselves. They are nocturnal and hunt for food on land and in the water; they enjoy eating small mammals, snakes, fish, and insects.

Usually, a mink will be found by itself; unless, it’s a mother raising its young. A female mink can give birth to three to six kits during the spring time. The kits are born hairless, but open their eyes and start growing hair around three weeks. These babies usually stay around the mother until the fall. Females stay close to the den, while male roam twice as far and visit other dens. Dens are usually found in a hollow log, or under tree roots.

The Everglades mink is a threatened special by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. In recent years, this mink has only been spotted in shallow freshwater marshes and swamps of the Everglades Park.

Spot the Mink
Although it usually comes out at night, there’s a chance you may still see an Everglades mink while exploring the Everglades as it heads home to its den. The best way to see the variety of wildlife and vegetation in the Everglades is a ride through the Everglades on an airboat with Captain Mitch. Airboat tours in Everglades give visitors an up-close-and-personal view of the mink’s habitat. Call Captain Mitch’s Airboat Tours at 239-695-3377 or click here to book a trip today!