The Secret To Keeping Skunks Out Of Your Spring Yard

3/16/2020

While seeing a short-legged, black and white ball of fluff lumbering across your lawn may look cute at first, a skunk on your property is no laughing matter. At about the same size as a cat, a skunk has a black body, legs, and head with a white blaze down the back and a bushy tail that often has black and white fur intermixed. Skunks are omnivorous and are attracted to homes that have available food sources such as garden crops, garbage, birdseed, pet food, and eggs. While they are nocturnal and usually mild-tempered, skunks will defend themselves if cornered or attacked. They also can damage property in their search for food and shelter.

a skunk scurrying across a lawn

The Smell is Only the Beginning

Skunk spray has been called nature’s version of tear gas. Discharged as either a fine mist or direct stream, skunk spray can cause temporary blindness and pain if sprayed in the eyes. The odor persists for weeks and can be detected more than a mile away. Yet this spray is only the tip of the iceberg in terms of the trouble caused by skunks. Skunks nest in underground dens and will sometimes dig out areas under woodpiles, buildings, porches, concrete slabs, culverts, drainpipes, and hollow trees. They also dig in lawns and other grassy areas, leaving one- to three-inch holes throughout a property in search of grubs. Additionally, skunks can carry diseases such as canine distemper, rabies, and tularemia. They also can introduce parasites like fleas, lice, ticks, roundworms, tapeworms, and flatworms to your home.

Keep Away

Skunks are attracted to food sources and den sites. To avoid inviting skunks near your home and property do not inadvertently provide them with food.

  • Feed pets inside.

  • Place indoor pet food and other food sources away from pet doors.

  • Clean up spilled or uneaten food before dark.

  • Secure compost bins.

  • Regularly clean up bird feeders.

  • Make sure trash cans have tight-fitting lids.

  • Enclose ducks and chickens in a secure coop at night.

Prevent access to denning sites.

  • Remove brush piles, lumber piles, and rock piles.

  • Close off areas under houses, porches, and sheds with quarter-inch hardware cloth, boards, metal flashing or other sturdy barriers.

  • Install battery-operated lights or portable radios to drive skunks away.

  • Sprinkle cayenne pepper or granular repellent over small areas in warm weather.

  • Surround areas with fencing - either two-foot chicken wire or a single strand of electric wire five inches above the ground.

Remember that trapping is a last resort. If you find yourself coming face to face with a skunk, avoid making loud noises, moving quickly, or appearing as a threat. Retreat quietly and slowly. Skunks have notoriously poor eyesight and will often approach people who are standing still. If this happens move away slowly.

Contact Kingston Pest Control

For the safe removal of skunks, contact Kingston Pest Control. We treat clients like family and pride ourselves on our expertise and the quality of our technicians. Our staff is trustworthy and capable and we put a high value on integrity and treating customers well. Make sure you don’t get skunked. Request your free estimate today. 

Tags: home pest control | wildlife | pest prevention |

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