When Nick Millman found a 8 – 10-week-old mustelid near his home, he wondered if he’d found a wild polecat. The East Devon resident has worked ferrets for years but this animal didn’t seem like a ferret to him. It had the dark colouring more commonly associated with polecats and behaved very much like a wild creature.

Nick decided to take the animal home and try to tame it.

After three months, it’s as wild as the day he found it.

Can you tell from the video below if it’s a ferret or a rare polecat? Could the speciest, trapped to near extinction in England, be making a comeback?

  • Edwina

    Dear Nick, I had an unforgettable incident involving a polecat. I swerved to avoid a creature lying in the road and went to see how injured it was. There appeared to be no damage but it let me pick it up so I thought it might be a pet. I carefully placed it in the boot of my car and drove the ten minute journey home. I opened the boot, picked the animal up and it bit my hand. It bit through to the bone and would not let go. Five minutes later I managed to free my hand but only because the polecat had chosen to attach itself to my other hand and it simply would not let go. Ultimately my solution was to open an empty wheelie bin and dangle it inside until it fell off. I struggled to turn the key in my door and blood was all over the door, wall, floor. I rang the RSPCA who took 3 or 4 days to collect the polecat to rehouse it. In the meantime the polecat lived in the wheelie bin with the lid wedged open eating cat food. It smelled dreadful. I was told that the best way to remove a polecat from my hand would have been to stub a cigarette out on it. Firstly that would have been cruel and I wouldn’t have done it as it was my fault trying to make it safe. Secondly, to reach for and open a packet of cigarettes then light one whilst a polecat is hanging onto your hand with its teeth would have been impossible. I was told it was a large male polecat and it was certainly bigger than the one in your video but similar. I don’t think ferrets give off a smell like a polecat. I wish you luck with your creature but keep thick gloves on.