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Discussion Starter #1
OK, mink in chicken coop. Very sad day yesterday and up most of the night. I saw him last night, so am sure of it being a mink.

Does anyone have tips for getting this sucker. Sure-fire bait? We have a weasel box in the coop and put traps in most of the holes. I am digging in hardware cloth around the base of the coop and we put a monitor in there last night (caught him in the act :( ). Put one of my dogs in the fenced in area around the coop, didn't seem to scare him, he came back.

Ugh, I hate these things. Born killers, took 15 of my birds the first night (a few of my favorites). Luckily I kept it down to two last night. :waa:

Thanks for any help.
 

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MacCurmudgeon
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If trapping season is in where you live this little varmint's hide can be sold for cash money.

If the rascal is coming to you and you know about where it will travel, you've caught it already.

If you don't have any traps go to by or borrow a #110 or better yet a #120 Coni-Bear type trap. Construct an 18" long box to fit the trap and with a couple of notches cut in one end for holding the trap upright, and close the other end off with whatever you used to build the box.

Glue a small mirror in the back of the box and place a wee piece of fresh fish in front of it, then set the trap in place. Make sure to anchor the trap.

The mink loves a hole which the long box creates. The mink loves fish; enough said. The mink is very territorial and loves a good fight. Once the mink sees it own reflextion the rest is history.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks Haggis, I do believe it is season but that is not an issue, I would tear the varmits head off with my teeth if I could right now!!!

I think my hubby has all that stuff, caught the last one (last year) in a box type trap. The mirror tip is a great one. I'm heading to town to get more hardware cloth will check on the traps and fish. Of course my hubby just left to go elk hunting, he's been trying to get a tag for seven years, finally got a cow tag so is gone for maybe a week. :rolleyes: Guess I depend on him too much.
 

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JAS,
That's a real bummer when mink get a taste for your poultry. When I raised chickens it happened and the mink kept coming back. You could set a live trap, though it seems the mink preference for killing live chickens. Seems to be like a sport to them. I finally had to stay up a night waiting for the mink with a 22 scoped rifle and a flashlight. I got him, and that was that. Mink do a lot of damage with chickens, and it only takes one. Get that one, and maybe set a trap for any others that might come around another time.
Hope this helps.
 

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If you have cats they may be caught in the leg traps or head traps. I have seen cat legs left in leg traps. nasty site.... I like the idea of a mirror and a live trap.
 

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I had the same exact problem last winter. I tried leghold traps to no avail. I ended up catching him in a hav-a-hart trap, using one of his wasted kills as bait in the back of the trap. As I approached the cage, he raced to the back of it and clenched onto the chicken carcass with his teeth; afraid only that I would take it away from him. He/she showed no fear of me. Acted just like a dog who's afraid you're gonna take away his favorite bone. Though I used a hav-a-hart trap to get him,... I had NO heart when I dispatched him ! Made me so mad that he'd kill and not even eat the birds; killing for the fun of it. It's different when you lose one to a fox or hawk , or something that actually eats the bird. That I can understand. But boy it made me mad to see the carnage one morning. GOOD LUCK getting him !

Steve in Maine
 

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MacCurmudgeon
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It has been said that if mink and weasels were the size of tigers it wouldn't be safe to walk the earth. But their aggression is their downfall when one is trapping them.

They are creatures who are very predictable in their travel patterns and attitudes. Many long liner mink trappers learned years ago that mink are as easy to catch as muskrat, but as with anything, the hardest part of catching a mink is knowing where there is a mink to catch.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks again. I couldn't find the boxes anywhere but found the traps. I think I am using the #110. Took me awhile to figure out how to set it, but it is out where the little bugger sneakes in, between a couple of things in a tunnel like area. No cats to worry about. I plan on setting out there tonight with my little gun and hopefully will get a shot off if the trap doesn't work.
 

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MacCurmudgeon
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Sometimes a small female [they're about half the size of a male] will slip past the trigger wires but usually that's not a big percentage problem. A #110 will kill a smaller mink but a large male might need some help. I like #120's for this reason, but again the #110 will hold them. Just make sure the trap is set solidly in place.

Good luck.
 

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JAS

They are creatures who are very predictable in their travel patterns and attitudes. Many long liner mink trappers learned years ago that mink are as easy to catch as muskrat, but as with anything, the hardest part of catching a mink is knowing where there is a mink to catch.
Assuming that it's legal to trap mink in South Dakota, and I suspect it is, this might be both the solution to your problem and an ease to your labors. Trapping is alive and well and there are plenty of trappers who just wish for a place to trap that has a good population of the critters they want to trap. If you were able to locate a national trapping message board I'll bet you could find some enthusiastic youngster to take those minks off your hands and save your chickens.

Why sit up all night if somebody else just wants the opportunity to do it for you?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Haven't caught him yet, but haven't lost any birds in the last four nights. I also have rabbits in with the chickens and two just had babies, so I have been fairly nervious about them. I run out to check on them whenever I hear any activity on the monitor (by the way, roosters start to crow at five in the morning no matter what).

I've got three of the sides wired and the dog is protecting the other side (she's not much of a threat but is good at barking). I am getting pretty good at setting that trap, but I don't seem to have the strength in my hands to set the #120.

My husband usually does the trapping and hunting on our place, (he's been after the pocket gophers lately). He just happens to be gone for the week, ugh.

I doubt if the mink would of moved on, but last night it was fairly quiet.
 

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MacCurmudgeon
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If it's a female mink, she'll be back in a day or two. They're very territorial, and their territory is small.

If it's a buck mink, he has to make his rounds to visit the dens of all of the females in his much larger territory. It may take him 10 days to 2 weeks to get back; but he will be back if he isn't killed along the way.
 
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