Pest Control

5 Ways To Get Rid of Minks

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Hubert Miles

Updated on


Minks are semi-aquatic and, like fish and frogs, can cause problems for homes with fish and koi ponds. Minks are known to prey on poultry, and they may be particularly vicious when it comes to ducks and chickens, murdering all of them in one night. But what are some of the best ways to get rid of minks?

There are many ways to get rid of minks. Here are the reasons down below:

  1. Building a fence around your home
  2. Install motion-activated sensors
  3. Setting up motion-activated lights
  4. Eliminating the minks food source altogether
  5. Trapping and releasing the animals
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As you continue to read this article, we will discuss a few ways to eliminate minks from your yard. These things are the proper methods for trapping and baiting minks and how to safely release them while also discussing other things you can do to help prevent them from coming onto your property and becoming pests in the first place. Let us learn all there is to know!

How To Get Rid Of Minks

When talking about getting rid of minks, there are plenty of things to consider. Firstly hiring a professional exterminator will be the easiest option for you. However, while it will be the most expensive option, leaving it to the professionals will guarantee that the minks will be taken care of while not causing you to do any of the labor or worry that you may be messing up the process. 

On the other hand, if you have a “do-it-yourself” attitude or having professionals come out to handle the problem for you is too expensive, there are many things you can do to alleviate the issue at hand.

1. Building a Good Fence

When it comes to most pests, having a good fence is always your first line of defense. If the minks can not get past the wall, then there should not be any minks you will have to worry about. 

Securing any entrance points that minks may exploit will make it impossible for them to enter poultry barns and chicken coups. Minks seldom pursue hens; instead, they will corner or attack them when asleep; thus, nighttime security is essential.

Here are some ways to keep minks away when it comes to your fence:

  1. Build a fence made of galvanized sheeting and gauge wire.
  2. Build a five-foot-tall wall around your property.
  3. Put rags with gasoline on or near your border to keep minks away even more.
  4. Be cautious not to bring lighters, matches, or flammable anything near your fence. The potent odor will drive the minks away from the wall by overwhelming their senses.

Large Openings

Closing off any large openings with metal flashings is a great place to start. Minks can chew and claw through softwood given enough time, so wood fences should not be considered. On top of this, sealing small holes in your wall with caulk or expanding foam is another excellent way to prevent minks from getting in.

Consider using steel wool with the expanding foam or caulk for even more defense regarding small holes in your fence. With these barriers in place, minks will not be able to chew through.

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When trying to keep your chickens or other poultry safe, consider building your coups up off the ground with chicken wire with holes no larger than 1 inch in diameter. This will make it difficult, if not impossible, for minks to squeeze into your chicken coups. This defense will also provide plenty of ventilation for the chickens.

2. Motion Activated Sprinklers

One of the most effective mink repellents is motion-activated sprinklers. There are two types of sprinklers available. The first is easier to set up, but it will require more maintenance. The sprinkler can be refilled.

Set these sprinklers in the appropriate locations and regularly keep them topped up with water. You will not need to bother filling batteries with the water because the refillable sprinklers contain a small solar panel to keep it charged and spraying those pesky minks.

The refillable motion-activated sprinkler is the polar opposite of the second kind. This sprinkler is more difficult to install but does not require any maintenance. You’ll need to connect this sprinkler to a water source, such as a hose. Although this sprinkler may be powered by the sun, many require batteries.

Where To Set Up Motion Activated Sprinklers

When deciding where to put your sprinklers, it’s critical to find access points to the areas where you’re most concerned about minks coming in. If you have chickens, rabbits, or other types of birds, or if you have barns, keeping minks out is crucial. With that in mind, these will be the most important places to consider when installing motion-activated sprinklers.

Set up the sprinklers with the stakes that come with them in front of potential entryways to these crucial regions. You might even use them to create a perimeter defense around your home.

Another brilliant place to put your sprinklers is around the areas where the minks are entering your property. Consider setting them to the base of your fence or trees.

3. Setting Up Motion Activated Lights

Minks are known to be nocturnal hunters. Setting up motion-activated lights can greatly deter these pests. Place them around the areas you are most worried about mink activity.

Like the motion-activated sprinklers above, these lights activate when they detect movement. The bright lights will scare any minks that come too close to the areas where these lights are posted.

4. Eliminating Mink Food Sources and Shelter

Minks are drawn to places that provide the best feeding and shelter alternatives. Take measures to remove these attractants from your yard to decrease their presence. While changing their environment is not as simple as it is for certain pests, you can attempt the following methods.

Try reducing any cover that leads to the area around your chicken coops, koi ponds, or other places you are worried minks will try to get into. This includes large bushes, tree overhangs, and dens and tunnels leftover from other animals.

Regarding abandoned dens and tunnels, minks are fond of setting up residence in these shelters. Sealing off or removing these shelter sites will be crucial in removing and repelling minks. If you find any of these abandoned tunnels or shelter sights, be sure to destroy them or altogether remove them.

5. Trapping and Releasing Minks

Along with the other measures listed above, trapping and releasing minks a few miles away from your property will be a great strategy to help rid yourself of these pests. There are several factors to consider while attempting to catch minks.

First and foremost, there are the traps themselves. You’ve undoubtedly seen these traps before, whether on TV or in the hands of a professional exterminator or pest management company. You can employ one or both door traps; either will suffice.

On the other hand, pest control professionals favor and promote the use of a single-door trap. This is owing to their convenience and ease with which they can be set up. Just make sure the traps you buy are small or medium in size.

However, there is a benefit to adopting the two-door method since both doors are open. With a two-door trap, minks and other predators may look thoroughly inside the trap without being impeded by the bars on the other side. This will put the pest at ease as soon as they enter the cage.

Minks are keen creatures that may sense the odor you placed on the cage, discouraging the rodents from approaching the mine in the first place. Wear hands when handling and putting up the trap.

Placing and Camouflaging The Traps

Since minks are often suspicious of new objects introduced into their environment, it is wise to camouflage traps before setting them. Start by wrapping the trap in some dark fabric. Minks are attracted to areas resembling dens and burrows that can contain some of their prey, like rats. 

Spraying your traps with water and rolling them in dirt or mud before placing them is another good camouflage method. This will give the cage a weathered look while also concealing some of the metallic smell. 

Placing the trap along areas where you have seen minks is a great place to start. Look for areas that can be considered dens for these minks. Another good spot is along your fence and chicken coops. 

When placing the traps once they have been camouflaged, dig a small level whole about 1 inch deep. This will make the trip even more inviting to the pests you are looking to trap.

Baiting Traps

Great baits to consider using when trying to trap minks are:

  • Bloody Chicken Meat
  • Chicken Entrails
  • Frogs
  • Fresh Fish

Correctly positioning the bait is crucial to the capture process. Ensure the bait you have chosen is placed, so the mink is required to fully enter the trap and trigger the plate to get to the bait. 

Once the process is completed, place a heavy object like a brick on top to prevent the mink from knocking the trap over to steal the bait inside. Along with this, check the trap every few hours. The longer a trapped animal is, the more anxious and dangerous it can get.

Releasing Minks After Capture

The first thing you should do after capturing a mink is cover it with a towel or blanket. This will assist in soothing the mink as you bring it to its release location. Carry the caged mink to your car and drive 5 to 10 miles away.

Ensure the site you chose for the mink’s release is acceptable and not too close to other residential areas. Place the cage on the ground and open it. Most of the time, confined animals notice an opening and flee at the first opportunity.

Some animals, however, are frightened and will remain in the cage for some time. If this is the case, take a step back and wait. The mink will eventually run out.

Final Thoughts

Minks can detriment any owner of chickens, rabbits, koi, and other animals. They are a ferocious predator and will always hunt more than they need to eat to survive. The information we have provided above should be sufficient to keep your animals safe and repel/get rid of those pesky minks.

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Photo of author

Hubert Miles

I've been conducting professional home inspections since 2002. I'm a licensed Home Inspector, Certified Professional Inspector (CPI), Certified Master Inspector (CMI), and FHA 203k Consultant. I started to help people better understand the home inspection process and answer questions about homeownership and home maintenance.
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