Mintaka III was the third planet in the Mintaka planetary system. The atmosphere was capable of supporting humanoid life-forms. This was the homeworld to the Mintakans, a pre-warp capable proto-Vulcan humanoid species. It was also home to the non-sentient hornbuck.
By 2366, the Federation had been covertly observing the Mintakans on the planet for several years. That year the existence of the anthropological team recording their behavior was exposed to the Mintakans when the generator powering their duck blind malfunctioned. As a result the team suffered several injuries and two fatalities, and during the course of their retrieval by the USS Enterprise-D the cultural contamination was worsened when several Mintakans witnessed the Federation's use of their advanced technology which they assumed was the power of the god they called 'The Picard'. (TNG: "Who Watches The Watchers")