10,000 freed minks become cannibalistic, go on feeding frenzy

The headline was kind of funny...

10,000 freed minks become cannibalistic, go on feeding frenzy

SULTAN, Wash. -- An animal rights group's plan to free 10,000 mink from a farm turned deadly after many of the emancipated mustelids became cannibals while others went on a carnivorous feeding frenzy.

About 9,000 of the freed mink have been returned to Roesler Brothers Fur Farm since the Aug. 25 break-in, but keeping them alive has been a challenge.

Normally, only siblings are caged together, but workers cannot readily determine which of the recaptured mink are related, said Kate Roesler.

'The mink are fine when they're litter mates together, but when they're not they're quite vicious and they're cannibals,' Roesler said. 'They do eat each other, and that's what we're battling.'

Days after the break-in, starving mink attacked a menagerie of exotic birds, a flock of chickens and even a Labrador retriever.

A few mink have been seen recently eating fish along local rivers and one turned up last week at a fruit stand on the edge of this town about 40 miles northeast of Seattle.

About 1,000 are still missing.

The Animal Liberation Front claimed responsibility and the FBI is investigating. No arrests have been reported.


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