Kirk thought I was odd for being so delighted by this sighting; but I have lived here all my life, knew weasels existed here, but have never seen one. Until yesterday, that is. This poor guy ended up deceased in the middle of one of the mowed pasture trails, I ran across him on my way down to work on fencing.
I’m not sure what caused his demise, but one of his front legs was freshly amputated, so perhaps he didn’t survive the injury. Several raptors work these fields continuously, so maybe one got interrupted before he could devour this catch. Sorry if it seems graphic, but Mother Nature is tough, after all! I was just intrigued by the chance to study one up-close, I found his orange underbelly remarkable. And check out those teeth! Though I feel bad about any animal’s end, I should probably be glad this guy won’t be preying on ducks anytime soon!
A search on Wiki reveals that this is likely a “stoat” aka “ermine” aka “short-tailed weasel.”
A few weeks ago while cleaning up barn wood, I uncovered a perfect little round hay nest full of mouse babies, just days old, still pink and furless. Though I probably should have dispatched them, I didn’t have the heart to. So, I tucked the nest away under a board to keep it dry, and give the momma a chance to find them and move them. She did, the next day, the nest was empty, infants relocated to someplace new. So, some animals get a lucky break, others don’t!
0 thoughts on “Stoat Spotting”
His injuries are the result of being mown down by a mower.
Kiko, I suppose it’s possible, though at this time, we had very few areas that were mowed by our tractor, and this guy was in an area that only had narrow trails mowed with a string trimmer. Weasels are pretty agile, so I would think one wouldn’t hang around and watch while you weed whacked towards him and let you get close enough to chop his leg off. :-0 But who knows! I suppose if it were a momma trying to protect a nest, maybe she would stand her ground. We certainly have goofy domestic ducks that have nearly been beheaded from this scenario.