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'Like Living in a Horror Film' After Minks Escape From Farm

As many as 8K were released Sunday morning in Pennsylvania
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 20, 2023 1:00 PM CDT
Updated Sep 24, 2023 6:29 AM CDT
'Like Living in a Horror Film' After Minks Escape From Farm
   (Getty Images / Steven Flannigan)

A week after an escaped murderer was finally captured in Pennsylvania comes a different kind of jailbreak and warning to residents in the state. "Unknown actor(s)" cut holes in a mink farm's fence early Sunday, providing a point of escape for between 6,000 and 8,000 minks that were released from their cages, per a report from Pennsylvania State Police. The Philadelphia Inquirer flags a Monday morning Facebook post from local Erin Bourinski: "Right now it's like living in some sort of sci-fi movie or horror film. Everywhere you look, there's minks—running through the fields, standing in the roads, trying to find shelter in random houses."

It was thought that most of the minks that fled the farm in Rockefeller Township, some 60 miles north of Harrisburg, had been collected by Tuesday. But residents were advised not to try to capture or even approach the few hundred animals thought to remain on the loose. "Live minks can be dangerous and may bite residents. Authorities are advising residents not to approach or attempt to catch minks without a safe and proper trap," state Sen. Lynda Schlegel Culver said in a statement. "They will bite you, and they can potentially hurt you," adds Pennsylvania Game Warden Mike Workman, per WNEP.

A hotline has been set up to field calls about any sighting of minks—dead or alive. CBS News reports the Pennsylvania Game Commission says minks generally live alongside water and are primarily nocturnal. The "agile and fierce fighters" kill their prey with a "hard bite to the back of the skull." The Guardian notes that mink farms have been targeted by animal activists before, though Fur Commission USA maintains such acts have unintended consequences. "The targeted farm is a legal, certified operation that adheres to stringent guidelines for humane animal care. Unfortunately, most [of the minks] will ultimately die from starvation, exposure or get hit by cars." (More mink stories.)

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