Mink are semi-aquatic, and spend most of their time in or near water. The vast majority live on streams, rivers, canals, ponds and lakes, but many in west Scotland, especially, are equally at home on coastal fringes. Your chances of catching a mink are consequently greatly enhanced if you place your trap on or near water.
Mink love to climb on a floating platform. A trap placed on a raft is therefore likely to be visited by any passing mink, and is also much less likely to catch terrestrial animals such as rabbits, hedgehogs, squirrels and stoats, all of which would demand a trap visit. For these reasons, almost all WRT traps are situated on a raft tethered to the bank of a waterway or water body. In a small minority of cases (e.g. when a river is in spate or a raft might form an obstruction) a trap situated on the bank may be a better option, and a raft would certainly not be a good option in marine waters.
These exceptions aside, WRT recommends placing a trap on a raft. Fortunately, a suitable raft, with a custom-designed tunnel to accommodate a cage trap, can be easily purchased. The raft of choice for WRT at present is made by Filcris Ltd. It is made of recycled plastic, does not shed polystyrene balls into the environment, and will last many, many years. We term a custom mink raft equipped with a smart mink trap as a ‘smart mink raft’ or ‘smart raft’. This is the standard equipment unit of WRT.