We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
I had the pleasure of seeing a Least Weasel scurry past the front of the garage yesterday, going from one pachysandra patch to another. They are not uncommon in their multi-continental, northern-hemisphere range, but I rarely see them. It makes me happy when I do.
Most often, they are seen hurrying across a country road.
Least Weasels like to be in cover, not out in the open. They are both daytime and nocturnal hunters, and active all winter in the snow, when they have all-white fur.
They are said to be the world's smallest mammalian predators, around 8-9" long. Bloodthirsty little guys.
On further thought, that guy could have been an Ermine. Not sure I can tell the difference because they move so quickly.
Regardless of the whole chicken thing; I have a fondness for weasels. I think it dates to the opportunity to watch one for almost ten minutes out in the woods one day. I was downwind and stayed still; it just continued the business of checking territory. When I finally did move, I had all of its fierce attention, before its common sense about relative sizes kicked in and it vanished.
Not sure where you're getting the smallest mammilian predator from. Just about all shrews are considerably smaller than that and are voracious predators of insects and worms. The bumblebee bat of Thailand also eats insects and spiders, and is roughly the same size as the smallest shrews.
If it's smallest predator of mammals you're after, several species of shrew are known to take mice, voles, and even larger rodents.
We had an all white weasel invite himself into our cabin in BC one winter years ago when the kids were small, through a hole maybe 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter.
Beautiful, fluid movements, fast, fast, fast, racing around under kitchen counters.
Wifey chased it out with a broom, claiming that it was a well known fact that weasels bit the necks of sleeping children. I begged to differ, but there's no reasoning with a woman holding a broom in a threatening manner.