On March 19th, 2013 I found my first duck of the season, a handsome male Hooded Merganser, and that is not all I found. While taking pictures of the merganser in an open area of waterI spied a small brown animal running in my direction on top of the thin ice edging the water area. It was too big to be a groundhog, but it was brown with a bullet shaped head when headed in my direction from my perspective of sitting in the car. I was disappointed at first that I didn't get many pictures when I first saw it,but I was focusing on capturing my first duck sighting. I stayed parked in my car beside the pond for a while and it was then that I noticed the little brown animal again running over the ice alongside the shore.
There is a big drainage pipe in this area leading from the pond under the railroad embankment there. The little creature was very frisky in its movements., Almost as if it were running and jumping for joy! Sometimes it would slip into the water and swim into the drainage pipe as the Hooded Merganser did
One overexposed picture gave me a clue as to what this little animal might be. In the overexposed picture I was able to see that it had a black-tipped tail , like an ermine has in the winter when the rest of its fur is white. An ermine is a winter version of a weasel and so I have identified this little animal as a weasel. I love these pictures. I have seen ermine twice but never had been so lucky as to photograph a weasel. Oh happy day it is that I am able to post weasel photos!