Snowstorm and After

by Carl Strang

I go for a walk in Mayslake Forest Preserve during my lunch break almost every day I am there. Sometimes in winter there will be a snow storm, and the different mood of the place is worth going out and experiencing.

Here’s a view of May’s Lake during a recent storm, with a cautionary sign for polar bear wannabes.

The day after a snowstorm my eyes are on the ground a lot, as there is a good fresh record of animal activity. I usually can count on the coyotes having covered much of the preserve the night before.

Here a coyote passed along the north edge of the mansion grounds. The partially filled tracks indicate that the animal was active the previous night while snow still was falling.

I am happy to report that the mink has been a regular visitor. Here it was following the little stream toward its origin as May’s Lake’s outlet, and encountered an ice shelf it had to cross.

The mink probably would have preferred to stay in the water.

Here the mink accelerates to its traveling bound gait.

Not slowing down a bit, the mink seems anxious to get back in the slightly warmer (and more secure) water.

The mink tracks were sharper than the coyote’s, having been made after the snow stopped falling. So far this winter all the mink signs I have seen have been consistent with a single, wide ranging individual.


  1. Kelli Parke said,

    January 18, 2011 at 11:59 am

    Hey Carl,

    I love your website/blog. It lets me get a little bit of nature even if I don’t get to go outside that day. I really appreciate your updates.

    Mink are cool 🙂

    Kelli Parke

    • natureinquiries said,

      January 19, 2011 at 6:50 am

      Hi, Kelli,
      Good to hear from you, and thanks for reading!

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