Skunks
Human and Animal Interaction

How do you get rid of skunks?

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2008-02-11 18:31:04
2008-02-11 18:31:04

To have a skunk around is not necessarily a bad thing, skunks are placid, retiring and non-aggressive. They try very hard not to get in trouble. They eat mostly insects, many of which are pests so they are beneficial to have around. In winter and spring they may eat mice.

Sometimes skunks are killed or evicted because someone is afraid of getting sprayed; in true it takes a lot to get sprayed, they prefer to stay out of trouble. They will not spray in or near their homes if they can avoid it either.

Most skunks dig their own burrows but can also use abandoned dens of other animals, hollow logs, wood or rock piles, under buildings, stone walls, hay or brush piles and trees or stumps. They will establish a territory of a few hundred acres at most. They are primarily nocturnal and usually solitary - except when mothers are raising their babies. They are active throughout the year, but in northern areas, they spend the coldest parts of the winter in their dens.

If you really want to evict the skunk, first make sure that is not winter or that they have litter. For evicting them, first take measures to discourage them from sticking around. These include removing garbage and pet food left out at night and eliminating convenient denning sites such as wood and rock piles, elevated sheds, openings under concrete slabs and porches and access to crawl spaces under houses. You may however want an alternative den somewhere not too far so the skunk moves initially there.

Then try repacking the hole the skunk is using with leaves or other material to see if it will get the message and move elsewhere. Do not fill up the hole with heavy things or materials and don't poke inside the den or use aggression, otherwise, beside leaving the skunk to starve, you will also get the so feared sprayed odor impregnated in your place for ages.

If the previous measures fail, place ammonia-soaked rags near or inside the burrow to one side so that the skunk has to pass them to get in and out. Make sure the skunk is not close by before taking either of these measures.

Never close a den the first day you think it is empty, rather cover with leaves to check if the skunk is still using it, otherwise you may trap it inside and the feared odor will stay as a reminder for weeks.

Some people use mothballs spreading some of these in the area. Mothballs work but there is a risk for pets and children. If and only if all measures fail, place a one-way door at the place where the skunk leaves his den, he will come out but not be able to come in. This is however a last resource as may backfire to a trapped skunk (odor defense!) or other undesired outcomes.

The local humane society, will provide wire "spring traps" for free or a nominal rental fee. It is a small cage, with a spring loaded door. You place food at one end, the skunk walks inside the trap, and the door springs shut. Now you can call the humane society to pick it up or released it in the wild.

In the case of wild animals, it is always best to allow them to get away on their own, they know best where to go and how to survive. Sometimes to trap them, even if releasing them later, will only put their lives at risk in many ways.

Keep your yard clean and of fruits and vegetables. Do you have a real compost pile or is it just a place where you throw peels and discarded veggies? Skunks will not spray unless provoked. Ask what do skunks eat? If your place has food they like well maybe you are caring for them.

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2020-06-02 02:02:47
2020-06-02 02:02:47

How to get rid of Skunks

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