Ladysmith resident Chris Walling was snorkelling with a video camera in a Cowichan Valley creek on July 6 when he came upon a mother and juvenile mink. Chris Walling photo

VIDEO: Momma mink loses patience with its youngster in Cowichan Valley creek

Snorkeller captures family drama on camera

Not all fascinating wildlife encounters involve large mammals – grizzly bears, wolves and whales.

Ladysmith resident Chris Walling had an up-close and personal encounter with a momma mink and her adorable youngster in a Cowichan Valley creek on Saturday.

Walling was snorkelling in the creek when he came upon the mother and two siblings and captured their actions on video. The mother and one youngster were in the creek and expecting a sibling sitting on a rock onshore to join them, but it appeared reluctant to get into the water.

It took a little convincing from the momma to get the little one into the water, Walling said. She had to grab it by the scruff of its neck and then plunged into the water, swimming along the rock with her offspring firmly clamped in her mouth. She then hauled the youngster out of the water and ran with it still in her jaws up a rock and into the creekside forest.

“The juvenile had proceeded as far as it could without getting wet and was reluctant to swim to mom and sibling,” Walling said. “After repeated instruction, mom mink lost patience and drags the little one into the water. This was just a small segment of the encounter. They paid me no heed.”

Care has to be exercised when encountering wild animals, especially mustelids like mink and otters, Walling said.

“In this case I was using a four-foot extension (on the camera) and never got between the sow and the cub. I didn’t impede movement in any way and made no attempt to chase,” Walling said.

Mink are small, amphibious weasels that are common in B.C. along the seashore and along streams. They feed on fish and invertebrates, small mammals and amphibians.

For more on his Vancouver Island snorkelling adventures, visit Walling’s Instagram account: @steel_snorkel or on YouTube: Steel Snorkel.

Some mink folklore:

Whaling in the Campbell River region

Suburban Wild: Muskrat and Mink, Inc.


@AlstrT
editor@campbellrivermirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

VIDEO: Terry Fox Run returns to Port Hardy for the first time since 2016

All told, Port Hardy’s Terry Fox Run raised $2,200.30 with more still coming in.

2019 FEDERAL ELECTION: Meet the candidates for the North Island-Powell River riding

In an effort to inform the North Island-Powell River riding constituents, we… Continue reading

Port Hardy celebrates Pride Day at Sacred Wolf Friendship Centre

In the evening, FISH TACO: A Seaside Drag performance was held at the Quarterdeck Pub.

Federal election: Meet the North Island candidates

We begin this series on the federal election by asking about their motivation for running.

Port McNeill Lions Club on the verge of shutting down, needs members

Stewart and Hinton hope volunteers will step forward to help them through this difficult time.

VIDEO: Liberals make child care pledge, Greens unveil platform on Day 6 of campaign

Green party leader Elizabeth May unveils her party’s platform in Toronto

Island campground on the chopping block as ALC deadline looms

Owners fighting to continue facility’s operation, with a huge outpouring of support

B.C. ends ‘birth alerts’ in child welfare cases

‘Social service workers will no longer share information about expectant parents without consent’

U.S. student, killed in Bamfield bus crash, remembered as ‘kind, intelligent, talented’

John Geerdes, 18, was one of two UVic students killed in the crash on Friday night

Free Tesla 3 offered with purchase of Surrey townhome

Century Group’s offer for Viridian development runs through Oct. 31

B.C. communities urged to improve access for disabled people

One in four B.C. residents has disability, most want to work

Sikh millworker lodges human rights complaint against Interfor, again

Mander Sohal, fired from Delta’s Acorn Mill, alleges discrimination based on religion and disability

UVic students killed in Bamfield bus crash were from Winnipeg, Iowa City

Authorities said the two victims were a man and a woman, both aged 18

Most Read