Brute’s Bleat April 5, 2017

This photo of a wild mink is probably one of those once in a lifetime things and was taken by Debbie Geyen last week. She and a co-worker with the DNR were replacing a sign post at the access of one of the lake accesses in Carver County when this mink popped out from under the access boat dock. The mink, normally not the most inquisitive animal in the world, didn’t seem to mind being photographed by Debbie. She had one other photo before the mink disappeared as quickly as it appeared. Debbie said it was a first for her. They tried to give the mink part of a sandwich, but the mink declined. The DNR says, “The mink is the most common water mammal predator (meat eater) in Minnesota. It can be found in nearly every wetland, lake, and creek in the state, including those in cities and towns. The mink is a versatile predator. Lithe and agile, it pursues its prey on land and in water. It can swim and dive with ease and remain underwater for many minutes.”
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The weekend’s warm weather on Saturday prompted local residents to start the yard work that seems necessary each spring. I gave it a brief try, picked up a lot of blown-down branches and twigs before I figured it was still too wet to get very serious about it. . . There were any number of motorcyclists out on Saturday and some anglers on area lakes. One was on Lake Mary on Saturday and another one or two on Maple Lake on Sunday. A fly fisherman friend said he threw some bugs out on Clearwater Lake Saturday when he spotted a lot of small sunfish near the dock. He may have gotten some of the kinks out of his equipment, but said he quit after catching and releasing about 20 sunnies. He caught one crappie, but that one didn’t measure up as a keeper either. . . Vanna and I spotted a turkey as it crossed the township road near the Jerry Carlson residence by Lake Mary. It was a huge bird and didn’t waste any time disappearing into Ney Park. The spring season on turkeys opens up April 13th, and according to the DNR, there are a substantial number of permits available in May that didn’t get taken in the earlier lottery. . . Mike Muller, who likes to winter in Florida, was in town last week complaining about the cold weather here as compared to Miami where it was 77 that day. He said fishing is picking up and he planned on fishing with his grandsons on Lake Okeechobee as well as showing them other points of interest while they were visiting with him over their spring break.
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I advertised an outdoor dog kennel for sale in last week’s Messenger and by Sunday night it was gone. A good example of the power of newspaper advertising, whether as a classified ad, or a display ad! The new owners plan to use a portion of it to keep tabs on a small flock of chickens their 11-year-old son maintains as one of Maple Lake’s entrepreneurs. His dad says there seem to be a fair number of Bald Eagles in their neighborhood (south of Hwy. 55) and he figures the eagles are keeping an eye on the chickens. He commented about seeing an eagle in the air with a house cat in its talons recently and warned his neighbors of the potential threat. Clearly recognized by its white head, brown body, and hooked yellow beak, the bald eagle has been the national emblem of the United States of America since 1782.