This fisher performs a series of acrobatic maneuvers to reach a suspended meal. Credit: Courtesy of Ken Smith

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Wild animals will do just about anything to procure food. After all, they may not necessarily know where their next meal is coming from.

Today’s trail camera video demonstrates what lengths some animals will go to in order to eat — even if it’s not the kind of hunt they may have been expecting.

Ken Smith of Mount Chase lives in an area where wildlife is plentiful. The challenge can be getting a look at some of the more elusive critters in the woods.

To increase the odds of capturing an animal on his trail camera, he provided area carnivores with an incentive. He hung a chicken drumstick from a piece of paracord suspended from a flexible tree branch, about 5 feet off the ground.

What resulted — three days later — was an incredible display of tenacity, agility and resolve by a feisty fisher that was the first animal to catch wind of the free meal.

“Thought you’d enjoy this game cam video of a super acrobatic and determined fisher,” Smith said. “This young guy shows off a playful side when it comes to free chicken drumsticks hanging from a tree! We are trying to get bobcat and Canada lynx but were just as tickled to see this little fisher performing for us.”

After some trial and error, the fisher figures out how to get a grip on the meat. Unfortunately, it also learns that it’s difficult to grab it with its teeth, while suspended in midair, and get in much quality chewing.

The fisher shows off its jumping ability to grab the suspended drumstick, then gets the front paws and legs involved, enabling it to get a better shot at ripping off some meat.

Finally, it dislodges a good chunk of the meat from the rope and is able to eat with all four feet on the ground. Undaunted, it returns for the leftovers and pulls it down far enough to get its hind legs on the ground while eating.

Fishers will put up with a considerable amount of difficulty to eat.

“Fisher are one of the few predators of porcupines, and they also eat snowshoe hare, squirrels, small mammals, nuts and berries,” Shevenell Webb, Furbearer Biologist for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, said in a previous trail camera story.

Webb, who has studied fishers from Maine to California and in western Canada, called it one of her favorite wildlife species.

“Fisher are in the weasel (mustelid) family and are typically 10-20 pounds. They are abundant and occur throughout the forests of Maine,” Webb said.

She explained that fishers are adept at climbing trees, as shown in Smith’s video, and are active all year long.

“They are very curious, have a good nose, and are always on the move,” Webb said.

Many thanks to Ken Smith for another entertaining wildlife video from Mount Chase and to Shevenell Webb for the fisher facts!

Pete Warner

Pete graduated from Bangor High School in 1980 and earned a B.S. in Journalism (Advertising) from the University of Maine in 1986. He grew up fishing at his family's camp on Sebago Lake but didn't take...