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null.gifLOCATIONKEY WORDSANIMALSAWARDSnull.gifDESCRIPTIONSIZECOSTSOPENING DATEnull.gifDESIGNCONSTRUCTIONLOCAL CONDITIONSPLANTSnull.gifFEATURES ANIMALSFEATURES KEEPERSFEATURES VISITORSINTERPRETATIONnull.gifRESEARCHMANAGEMENTCONSERVATIONLOCAL RESOURCESnull.gif
 
 
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Fasanerie Wiesbaden

Mink-Ferret Rotation Exhibit

Corinne Bailey and Monika Fiby, authors for ZooLex
Klaus Schüssler, editor for Fasanerie Wiesbaden
Published 2015-8-24
español

 

UP LOCATION:

Tier- und Pflanzenpark Fasanerie , Wilfried-Ries-Straße 20, 65195 Wiesbaden, Germany
Phone: 0049-61-1 4689307
Fax: 0611 40907720
URL: http://www.fasanerie.net


UP KEY WORDS:

EEP, breeding program, small mammal


UP ANIMALS:

Family:Species:Common Name:Capacity:
MustelidaeMustela lutreolaEuropean mink0.1+young
MustelidaeMustela putorius furoFerret2.2+young


UP DESCRIPTION:

The Mink-Ferret Rotation Exhibit was designed as part of the park’s 2008 development plans, which also included a new nutria exhibit and access path. The location for the exhibit was chosen in an area of the woods, in which useful and species-appropriate structures were already in place. The site is situated in mixed deciduous forest, containing abundant undergrowth. The addition of water features is essential for the species and gives the visitor an insight into a typical habitat of the species.

Fasanerie Wiesbaden decided to participate in a mink breeding and release program by taking in a pregnant female from the EuroNerz e.V. breeding centre every spring and returning her and her litter by end of the year. This makes additional space available to the EuroNerz program and draws visitors attention to the breeding and release program. Since the minks are away from January to May, ferrets are moved into their exhibits during this time. When the minks are present, this group of ferrets lives in an enclosure in the back. Another group of ferrets is visible in an exhibit next to the minks. This neighbourhood allows to illustrate the relationship, similarities and differences between the two species.

The mink female births her litter in the park. They are given access to a small and large exhibit until the adult mink has to be separated from the juveniles. The mother is separated into the smaller exhibit at this time. Once the mother and her young return to the breeding centre, the ferrets are moved to the two front exhibits.

Since minks are a solitary species that hides and sleeps a lot, using the rotation system ensures that there are always active animals present in the exhibits. A group of young minks is more visible than a single adult animal and ferrets are a popular alternative to minks because they are very active and fun to watch.
 

UP SIZE:

Four enclosures can be used for mink or ferret. One is off-show with 60m², the others have visitor viewing opportunities and are 70m², 120m² and 15m².

Space allocation in square meters:

useindoorsoutdoors     total exhibit    
accessible     total     accessible     total    
animals4265270
visitors100100
others6060
total4425430

 

UP COSTS:

Euros 160,000 including 6 % for design.

The total cost was for both, mink and nutria exhibits. About half of the cost was for water management: collection, storage, pumps, distribution, pools and recycling through water plant basins.
 

UP OPENING DATE:

10 September 2012
 

UP DESIGN:

Beginning: August 2006

  • Design: Dipl.Ing. Monika Fiby, MLA, Sobieskigasse 9/12, 1090 Vienna, Austria

UP CONSTRUCTION:

Beginning: October 2011

  • Landscaping: Richtig GmbH, Saarstraße 80 65201 Wiesbaden
  • Water Technology: Gerhardt GmbH, 65205 Wiesbaden

UP LOCAL CONDITIONS:

walter.gif This is a climatic diagram for the closest weather station.

 

UP PLANTS:

Existing vegetation, including an old oak tree, was used as already appropriate to the requirements of the species. Grass and forbs were planted along the water edges. Reeds form an island in the middle of the path that takes visitors along the nutria and the mink exhibit. Vines cover the wooden walls.

The plant list specifies the Latin names of the plants used for this exhibit.


UP FEATURES DEDICATED TO ANIMALS:

The requirement of the mink as a semi-aquatic animal was a particular consideration in the designing of this enclosure. All enclosures have water bodies. The main exhibit contains a long shore line, with access to running and standing water. This encourages the mink to display natural behaviours. The environment also contains a number of natural sheltered hiding places for the mink, such as under stones, large roots and tree trunks. Animals can choose between two sleeping boxes in each enclosure.
 

UP FEATURES DEDICATED TO KEEPERS:

A secure area at the back of the enclosure serves as a working area for the keepers. This space allows the keepers to access the individual enclosures, and to maintain the water system and pumps. Separate enclosures within the complex are connected by hatches that can be open or closed for the keeper’s use. The keepers can also look into the sleeping boxes of the mink by lifting a wooden flap, allowing for a closer view of the animals. They can lock the animals in the sleeping boxes for safe access into their enclosure and for their transport.
 

UP FEATURES DEDICATED TO VISITORS:

The visitor is able to view parts of the exhibits from the main path, before taking a heavily forested side-path to other parts of the exhibits.

Glass windows allow visitor unimpeded views of the enclosures and getting close to the animals, whilst preventing direct contact between the animals and the observers.

Both species, minks and ferrets, have a short rythm of sleep and activity and therefore are visible during the day, but only for part of the time. With minks and ferrets in three exhibits, chances are high that visitors will see active animals any time.
 

UP INTERPRETATION:

The area in front of the exhibit is big enough to accommodate a school class, facilitating educational programs. Educational and informative signs positioned around the enclosure inform about characteristics of the European mink, including biology, social structure and threat status, as well as the park’s role in the breeding program for this species. Due to the rotation element of this exhibit, informative signs about both mink and ferret species are displayed.
 

UP MANAGEMENT:

After the mating season in early spring, the breeding centre (EuroNerz e.V) transfers a pregnant mink female to the zoo. The female raises her young in the front enclosures of the exhibit until late summer, when they have to be separated. During the winter, the mother and juveniles are returned to the breeding centre in preparation for reintroduction to the wild or for further breeding.

During the first few months of the year, when there are no mink in the park, ferrets from back enclosures are brought forward to the front enclosures, where they can be seen by the visitors. They remain there until a new female mink is transferred into the zoo.
 

UP RESEARCH:


 

UP CONSERVATION:

The zoo is part of the EEP for European mink, and works in collaboration with the organization EuroNerz e.V. to host breeding females and their young. Since the young are quite autonomous and handling them is avoided, their living for a few months on exhibit does not influence their ability to survive in the wild when being released.

Rainwater is collected in a cistern and used during the dry season. The water is recycled through reed beds in the back of the nutria exhibit and pumped back into the ponds.
 

UP LOCAL RESOURCES:

A locally based landscaping company was used in the construction of this exhibit.

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Overview
©Fasanerie Tierpark Wiesbaden, 2014

 
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Site Plan
©Monika Fiby, 2007

 
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Mink (1)
©Florian Möllers/Euronerz e.V.,

 
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Baby Mink (2)
©Florian Möllers/Euronerz e.V.,

 
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Mink-Ferret Rotation (3)
©Monika Fiby, 2007

 
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Mink-Ferret Exhibit (4)
©Monika Fiby, 2014

 
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Mink-Ferret Exhibit (5)
©Monika Fiby, 2014

 
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Mink-Ferret Exhibit Seating (6)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Mink-Ferret Exhibit Windows (7)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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View into Rotation Exhibit (8)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Mink in River (9)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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View into Enclosure (10)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Mink in Rocks (11)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Mink Exploring (12)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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View into Enclosure (13)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Mink Playing with Hatch (14)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Ferret Enclosure (15)
©Monika Fiby, 2014

 
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Back of Enclosure (off-show) (16)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Enclosure Access (off-show) (17)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Off-show Mink Sleeping Boxes (18)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Off-show Mink Sleeping Boxes - viewing hatch open (19)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Mink in Sleeping Box (20)
©Tammo Zelle, 2011

 
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Family Visiting Exhibit (22)
©Monika Fiby, 2012

 
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Rotation Explained (23)
©Fasanerie Wiesbaden, 2012

 
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Visitors at the Mink/Ferret/Nutria Exhibit (25)
©Monika Fiby, 2015

 

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