Mink: Water Wolves That Destroy Your Koi Pond

You’re probably like most people in that you look forward to early spring. The ground thaws. The days grow longer. The ice melts. And you begin to ready your yard and pond for another warm season ahead. Suddenly, as you drain the water, you notice that there’s no fish in it. Are they all hiding? You drain the water further. Still no fish. They’re all gone! You’ve been struck by the water wolf, a.k.a. mink. These slippery predators are some of the sneakiest, most agile hunters out there. Consequently, they will drain your pond dry of fish if given the chance.

Mink are silent aquatic hunters

Mink’s bodies were built for hunting. They have glossy, fur-covered bodies with webbed feet. These dark-brown, semi-aquatic carnivores usually measure about 20 inches in length and weigh 1.5 to 2 pounds. Most are nocturnal, although some do hunt during the day. Nevertheless, it’s hard to spot them because they move swiftly. They are excellent swimmers, able to hold their breath underwater for up to 100 feet. Moreover, once these slippery little crooks find a food source in your pond, they will keep coming back for more. They hardly leave any evidence whatsoever.

Minks don’t discriminate between the size of the prey. They will grab both big and small fish. Our animal control professionals note that this most often occurs during the early winter to early spring months. However, it can also unfortunately happen at any time of the year. During the winter months, they will enter the pond through the circulation hole maintained through the cold season, and slip out again through the very same entry point. Homeowners may see a few scales left behind or tracks in the snow. Furthermore, winter time makes fish easier prey. Fish become slow and lethargic due to colder temperatures. Then come spring, homeowners are shocked to find an empty pond.

Advanced Wildlife Control Professional Services

If you stock your pond with fish, be vigilant! If your fish are large, some scales may be left behind. Also, you may notice tracks in the snow or mud. Check in the early morning hours before the sun has a chance to evaporate them. We attempt to trap mink humanely if possible and relocate them at least 30 miles away from your property. Let our licensed pest control professionals take care of the problem so you can spend your warm summer months enjoying your backyard!


Mink are related to the badger and skunk, through the same weasel family.