Earlier work, particularly during the Coypu eradication scheme, showed that mink are particularly attracted to floating rafts. Our predation research team decided to investigate this, and found that it is possible to place clay lined tracking pans in tunnels on rafts and detect which species of mammals are using these. Once presence of mink is detected it is possible to put a trap in place and catch the mink.
This scheme has two great advantages over existing techniques. First, it saves time since fortnightly checks are all that is needed until the traps are set, when daily checking becomes essential. Second, it reduces the chance of catching non-target species, since it is possible to trap solely on rafts where mink are the only species known to be visiting. Initial results also indicate that this method is far more effective than the normal trapping techniques.