Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Jewel # 174 (May 13, 2014)

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“And they shall be Mine, saith the Lord of hosts,
in that day when I make up MY JEWELS.”
(Malachi 3:17)

To my dear grandchildren,

The Pretty Mink

“God said, let the earth bring forth the living creature
after his kind . . . and it was so . . .  and
God saw that it was good.”
(Genesis 1:24-25)

The mink is a pretty little animal with thick, glossy, dark-brown fur, but with a white patch on its chin, which often extends over its throat and chest.  It is only about 25-35 inches long, including its bushy tail, and weighs less than four pounds.  Beady black eyes, a long slender neck and small ears all add to its beauty and give it an alert appearance.  Its legs are short and its paws are equipped with razor-sharp claws.  Mink fur is waterproof.

Like its relative the weasel, its food is mostly fish, frogs, mice and other small animals, birds, eggs, muskrats and rabbits.   The Creator has equipped the mink with partially webbed hind feet to help in swimming and moving about underwater, as it searches for much of its food.

An excellent swimmer, a mink is equally at home on land or in water.  It prefers to make its home close to a stream or pond, sometimes in an abandoned animal burrow, inside a hollow log or under the roots of a tree.  If necessary, it will make its own burrow, about ten feet long and usually with two entrances.  One entrance may be underwater, but both open to a large den where four to ten kits are raised in the spring.

The mother mink nurses the kits for about five weeks and then adds some solid food for two more weeks, before taking them outside where she teaches them to find their own food.  She also teaches them how to protect themselves from owls, fox, lynx  and bobcats.  The kits playfully chase each other around, have mock battles and slide down banks into streams of water.  At other times they curl up like a ball and float down a stream just for fun.

An adult mink is a tough fighter, lightning-fast on its feet and using its needle-sharp teeth and claws affectively.  It also will spray an enemy with a strong unpleasant-smelling musk, which discourages the most vicious bobcat, fox or lynx foolish enough to attack.

During the winter, a mink continues hunting, its webbed feet helping in snow and and its sharp ears detecting the noise of mice below the surface.  It digs rapidly through the snow to capture the rodents that are otherwise quite safe.

Wild animals have no knowledge of their Creator and His constant care of them.  The Bible says, “O Lord, Thou preservest man and beast.  How excellent is Thy loving-kindness” (Psalm 36:6-7).  How important for us to notice that this includes mankind, just as the Bible tells us in many other places of His love and care for us.

Have you ever thanked Him for His loving-kindness?

Love you all,
Grandpa  

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