Albino American Mink

Over the past few years American Mink have become a regular sight in the Mersey Valley. Whilst normally easiest to see around dawn and dusk during late summer they can be seen throughout the day.

I first noticed this particular white Mink at the end of July along with a more common dark brown one. Presumably this was either a sibling or a parent. At the time it was on the far bank of the river and whilst I suspected it was an albino I wasn’t 100% sure.

For a few weeks in late autumn one of our regular walks coincided with dusk and the white Mink was back hunting in a favourite spot. 

Albino Mink on the River Mersey
Albino Mink on the River Mersey

I think the pink ears, nose and paws are a clear indication that this particular Mink has a complete lack of Melanin and is therefore an albino.

A slightly closer view
A slightly closer view unfortunately I only had the pocket sized LX5 with me rather than the DSLR and long lens.

A short video of the albino Mink taken whilst hanging on to a dog lead. Interesting to see the Mink sniffing the air part way through. Unfortunately one of the drawbacks of albinism is that vision is frequently impaired due to the lack of melanin.

Albino Mink
The final photo of the albino Mink. Despite its poor eyesight I’ve observed it swimming and catching young fish with relative ease.

It’ll be interesting to see whether it survives the winter.  Normally without any protective camouflage albino animals tend to have a relatively short life. The American Mink however doesn’t have any natural predators within this country so this one could be the exception. 

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