The term “mink” refers to two living species of mammal; the European mink (Muestela lutreola) and the American mink (Neovision vision). Although both species appear quite similar, they do not share a common genus. European Mink are more closely related to polecats than they are to American mink, which are larger and stouter animals than those in the Mustela genus.
Mink feed on rodents, fish, crustaceans, amphibians and birds. They are very capable swimmers and are able to catch prey in water, on land and underground. Mink do have to be wary of natural predators such as owls, foxes, bobcats and coyotes. However, the vast majority of mink are killed by human activities such as hunting to protect fish populations, trapping for fur and automobile strikes.