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European Mink

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  • English name
    European Mink
  • ClassificationCarnivora, Mustelidae
  • Scientific nameMustela lutreola

European Mink
Click the image to expand

The European Mink population dropped, originally, because of fur hunting. Now, competition with the introduced American Mink as well as river pollution threatens their existence.

Size & Weight (Adult)

Body length: Male 28 to 43 cm / Female: 32 to 40cm
Tail length: Male 12.4 to 19 cm / Female: 12 to 18 cm
Weight: 500 to 800 g

(Source: Doubutsu Sekai-isan* Red Data Animals Kodansha) (*World Animal Heritage)

Where they live

The European Mink lives in areas such as Russia, France, Spain, Ukraine, and Estonia.

What they eat

They eat rodents like Voles and Muskrats, as well as crab and fish.

What they are like

The European Mink likes the waterside and is a skilled swimmer. They have webbed feet and catch most of their food underwater.

Find out more about the European Mink!

Competition between minks?!
For many people, mink means fur. Originally, many European Minks lost their lives because of their fur. However, today, their biggest threat comes from competition for food and habitat with the American Mink. American Minks were introduced into Europe to increase the availability of higher quality furs. Some of these introduced minks became wild.

Waterside environments are becoming polluted!
Another problem that threatens the waterside-loving European Mink is river pollution. Some habitats have disappeared completely due to the construction of river dams. While efforts are being made to increase their population through artificial breeding, their numbers continue to shrink in the wilderness. The European Mink must have a safe environment to live in before the artificially bred offspring can be released to wilderness.


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