American mink (Neovison vison) are a non-native species, originally brought over to the UK and bred as part of the fur trade from the late 1920s. Mink were first confirmed to be breeding in the wild in 1956 due to escapees and suspected releases. Fur farming was banned in the UK in 2000 with the introduction of the Fur Farming (Prohibition) Act 2000.
American mink are canivores and eat a wide range of prey including frogs, water birds, rabbits, fish, mice and water voles. Water vole decline in particular has been linked to predation by American mink.
The LCSP are currently working on a project to test the most effective and humane means of controlling mink in Lincolnshire funded through the Anglian Water Service Flourishing Environment Fund. The LCSP are working closely with partners at the Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust who have funded surveying of the chalk streams used in the project. The project aims to gain important evidence to feed into the national conversation on mink control.