The minks awaiting their fate at the Lang Farms fur farm near Eden Valley, Minnesota, have been given a surprising second chance.
According to WCCO, an animal rights activist or group of activists freed close to 40,000 minks at the farm into the wilds of central Minnesota.
The Stearns County Sheriff’s Office said the mass jailbreak occurred on Monday night and that the suspects dismantled the fence surrounding the area where the animals were kept and then opened all of the mink cages.
Lang Farms believes anywhere between 30,000 to 40,000 minks are now traipsing across the Midwest state, an estimated $750,000 loss for the farm.
Minks are native to Minnesota, but wildlife officials worry that these formerly captive minks will have trouble surviving in the outside world. Additionally, the sudden appearance of 40,000 minks, which feast on frogs, fish, ducks and worms, to the area could have negative effects on the local wildlife.
The Sheriff’s Office is asking anyone in the Eden Valley area who sees a mink to call Lang Farms, so the farm can send a professional to recapture the animal.
No activists or animal rights groups have come forward to claim responsibility for the great mink escape, but numerous groups have shared their support for the incident.