Neovison macrodon 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Animalia Chordata Mammalia Carnivora Mustelidae

Scientific Name: Neovison macrodon (Prentis, 1903)
Common Name(s):
English Sea Mink
Mustela macrodon Prentis, 1903
Taxonomic Notes: Sea Mink has been regarded as a subspecies of the American Mink Neovison vison, but Mead et al. (2000) and Wozencraft (2005) recognized it as a distinct species. Both are commonly included in Mustela, but were separated into Neovison according to Abramov (2000). Cytogenetic and biochemical data support their placement in the genus Neovison (Wozencraft 2005).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Extinct ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2015-05-02
Assessor(s): Helgen, K. & Turvey, S.T.
Reviewer(s): Duckworth, J.W.
Sea Mink is Extinct. It was thought to have survived until about 1894 in New Brunswick (Campbell 1988, Nowak 1999), but it is uncertain whether these animals belonged to this species or to Neovison vison. Mead et al. (2000) substantiated the validity of Sea Mink as a species and estimated the extinction date as about 1860.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Formerly occurred along the coasts of Canada (New Brunswick, Newfoundland) and in some coastal eastern states of the United States of America (Massachusetts, Maine). The Sea Mink was exterminated, in the late nineteenth century (Mead et al. 2000). Its range seems subsequently to have been occupied by N. vison (Nowak 1999).
Countries occurrence:
Regionally extinct:
Canada (New Brunswick, Newfoundland I); United States (Maine, Massachusetts)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Regionally extinct:
Atlantic – northwest
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The Sea Mink reportedly made its home among the rocks along the ocean. The diet consisted mainly of fish and probably also included molluscs (Nowak 2005).
Systems:Terrestrial; Marine

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Sea Mink was hunted for its fur.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): This species was hunted to extinction (apparently for the fur trade).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: No conservation is possible: the species is extinct.

Classifications [top]

9. Marine Neritic -> 9.2. Marine Neritic - Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs
12. Marine Intertidal -> 12.1. Marine Intertidal - Rocky Shoreline
12. Marine Intertidal -> 12.2. Marine Intertidal - Sandy Shoreline and/or Beaches, Sand Bars, Spits, Etc
12. Marine Intertidal -> 12.3. Marine Intertidal - Shingle and/or Pebble Shoreline and/or Beaches
13. Marine Coastal/Supratidal -> 13.1. Marine Coastal/Supratidal - Sea Cliffs and Rocky Offshore Islands

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
5. Biological resource use -> 5.1. Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals -> 5.1.1. Intentional use (species is the target)
♦ timing:Past, Unlikely to Return    
→ Stresses
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

Bibliography [top]

Abramov, A.V. 2000. A taxonomic review of the genus Mustela (Mammalia, Carnivora). Zoosystematica Rossica 8: 357–364.

Campbell, R. R. 1988. Status of the Sea Mink, Mustela macrodon, in Canada. Canadian Field-Naturalist 102: 304-306.

IUCN. 2016. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2016-1. Available at: (Accessed: 30 June 2016).

Mead, J.I., Spiess, A.E. and Sobolik, K.D. 2000. Skeleton of extinct North American Sea Mink (Mustela macrodon). Quaternary Research 53: 247-262.

Nowak, R.M. 2005. Walker’s Carnivores of the World. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, USA and London, UK.

Nowak, R.M. (ed.) 1999. Walkers Mammals of the World. Sixth edition. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore and London.

Wozencraft, W.C. 2005. Order Carnivora. In: D.E. Wilson and D.M. Reeder (eds), Mammal Species of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference. Third Edition, pp. 532-628. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore.

Citation: Helgen, K. & Turvey, S.T. 2016. Neovison macrodon. In: . The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T40784A45204492. . Downloaded on 21 June 2018.
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