Green in the water

(Muskrat carrying lunch.)

I was out for a walk around the pond last week when I spotted this fellow swimming in the pond, a clump of pond weeds in its mouth.  Muskrats dine on mostly aquatic vegetation (cattails, rushes, sedges, water lilies, and other pond weeds).  As I’ve stated here a few times, we don’t care much for them because they dig their dens — usually consisting of several chambers, each one with one or more tunnel entrances leading underwater — into the dam or bank of the pond.  This undermines the dam’s integrity and could cause it to collapse, leading to the pond being emptied onto the neighbor’s property.

Gosh, there has been a great deal of dam talk around here lately.

The trapper will be along sometime in the fall to capture the muskrats.  He made a coat for his wife one year with muskrat fur.  It is said to be soft, warm, durable, and waterproof.

I’m surprised the muskrats are doing so well this year.  We’ve spotted at least one mink around the pond.  The mink is an enemy of the muskrat (as are humans and raccoons).  Minks have kept our muskrat population down to zero for the past couple of years.

(Another pre-scheduled post.  Hopefully we’re hiking around in the mountains, having a great time.)