How do I run off skunks? : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Okay, they're not living around the house but still....when I find one of their dugouts anywhere near our house I just want them OUT! I'm worried the dogs will encounter them and when you sleep with dogs you sure don't want that! Anyway, it seems to be a really good year for skunks. How do I drive them away?

-- Robin (, June 04, 2001


Never had to try this myself, but some people say moth balls work. I suppose you could try putting some around where you see them digging. Also see if you can figure out what's attracting them. We had a big skunk around last summer. We could see it waddling under the kitchen window. We moved the compost pile further away from the house and didn't see much of the skunk after that.

-- Cathy N. (, June 04, 2001.

Nothing attracts skunks faster than cat food left outside where they can smell it!!! Or, really anything they consider edible, compost, trash cans without tight-fitting lids, etc., etc. Try putting up all pet foods at night, and be dure to keep all trash tightly seales up and inaccessible to "night visitors", because if you have skunks, it's only a matter of time 'till you have racoons and possums coming too! Mothballs do help, but removing the enticement works even better.

-- Annie Miller in SE OH (, June 04, 2001.

About 2 weeks ago, I filled a burrow with used (wet, stinky, icky) cat litter. Apparently it worked - the burrow has not been re- excavated. I believe this was a groundhog burrow, but worth a try on skunks, too. Sandy

-- Sandy in MN (, June 04, 2001.

With a gun !

-- Patty {NY State} (, June 04, 2001.


My brothers favorite tactic... (poor skunks- but it worked!)

He waits until he's confident the skunk is safely settled in for the day (@11am), then he tosses a lit package of jumpling jacks (not firecrakers, but close)into the den and runs. Soon the skunk is also heading away, and I guess the smell of the gunpowder keeps em away. (That, and a devil of a dislike for surprises!)

-- Marty (, June 04, 2001.

The moth balls REALLY work. DW

-- DW (, June 04, 2001.

Very carefully!

-- Ardie from WI (, June 05, 2001.

Thanks to everyone for the suggestions and the humor, too! I know it's selfish of us to live in the country and want the air to smell wonderful but hey!

-- Robin (, June 05, 2001.

When a female tried to raise a litter under our back porch, a friend at the conservation department suggested flooding the area with water. Mama skunk thought her kits were in danger of drowning and she was out of there quick. Stayed gone as long as I kept the area wet. I also made a point to backfill the burrow as much as possible and keep the pet food cleaned up afterwards.

-- marilyn (, June 05, 2001.

I usually just read and not post but couldn't pass this up. Skunks are very easy to get into a live trap(like Hav-a-Heart) and relocate. They are helpful, pretty animals that mostly mind their own business but I agree, you don't want your dogs tangling with them! Just cover the trap with a folded sheet or whatever, leave food and a little water in there(as mentioned, they LOVE catfood!), check it a little while after dark. If occupied ,move it gently, somewhere quiet and protected ,and the next morning take it off somewhere a few miles away and release. You can set it, covered in your ,no problem. :-)

-- Little Quacker (, June 07, 2001.

I was going to say very carefully, but Ardie beat me to it. If I remember right, a loud noise, like honking the horn on a car works very well. Also loud music (rock and roll if you can stand it) works. Don't leave any sardines around. It really attracks them. I guess I'm writing about what we called "pole Cats." Polecats used to eat my chickens when in lived in South east New Mexico, long, long, ago. That brings up a queston. I wonder what the difference is in a polecat and a skunk. I know skunks are larger.


-- eagle (, June 08, 2001.

buckshot for the ones you see, m-80s for their holes.

-- April (, June 08, 2001.

There are two genuses of mammals that fit this catagory. The striped skunk(Mephitis mephitis)which is the stocky black with one or two white stripes and the spotted skunk(sometimes mistakenly called a polecat, Spilogale putorius). The beautiful little spotten skunk is much more slender(weasle like) than the stocky striped skunk and much smaller. Both species are suberb hunters of mice and rats and eat many harmful insects and also love yellow jacket nests. they don't go looking for trouble but as mentioned above are easy to relocate if you have a curious dog. :-)

-- Little Quacker (, June 08, 2001.

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