Bubble, bubble…

At this time of year, the pond pump has been retired for the winter, so the waterfall is not working. During the summer, the ripples from the waterfall are always wandering across the pond, but not now. Sometimes, when it’s warm, one of the larger fish will move quickly near the surface, and waves will result. But not now.

So, I was surprised this morning when I saw some fairly large waves surging across the pond, first from under the rocks at the base of the waterfall, and then at the base of an adjacent rock. Then more waves, and bubbles coming from under the water. Were the walls of the pond collapsing? Were decaying leaves releasing gases? The bubbles meandered across the pond in a line, and I watched, fascinated.

Then the mink came out of the water, looked around, and dove back under the water. I’ve seen a mink at the pond twice in the past, both times in the spring when the ice was still on the pond. Never this time of year.

I spent about 30 minutes watching and filming him. The camera I have “only” has a 10x zoom, so movies taken with him at the other end of the pond were recognizable, but not dramatic. I did get one with him quite close to the house (perhaps 25 feet): the contents are not as dramatic as the others, but at least you can see him in some detail.

Click here for movie 1 (35 MB)
Click here for movie 2 (28 MB)
Click here for movie 3 (46 MB)

The squawks in the audio track are my parrots, not the mink!

He dove and swam quite a bit, clearly unperturbed by the near-frozen water. He can cross the small pond under water with ease, leaving a trail of bubbles on the surface to indicate where he is swimming.

This is one reason I moved here, and why I built the house as I did. The pond is right next to the house, which is the only reason I was able to get the pictures that I took. Moments like this make it all worth while.

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