What to do if you find a Skunk
If you have found a Skunk in need of immediate help, please click here for information.
How to Coexist with Skunks
- Keep garbage cans secure.
- Keep pet food and water inside.
- Mothballs sprinkled on the ground discourage skunks from digging up lawns for insects and visiting homes or campsites, since they and many other small animals are repelled by the smell of camphor.
- If you see a skunk during daylight hours, it is probably sick.
- Since skunks can be rabies and leptospirosis vectors, do not attempt to catch the animal yourself, call a professional.
About Striped Skunks (Mephitis mephitis)
- Nocturnal (night-active)
- Omnivore-eats plants, insects, small mammals and amphibians
- 6-14 lbs.; male larger than the female
- Skunks are boldly colored to warn predators to stay away
- Anal glands are highly developed-can spray accurately up to 15 ft.
- Skunks do not spray unless mortally threatened
- They will usually arch their back, raise their tail, and stomp their front feet as a warning
- When spraying, forms a U-shape, lifting head and rump in the air
- Natural predator of the skunk is the great horned owl
- Skunks do not hibernate but can become temporarily dormant during extremely cold weather
Striped Skunks Facts
- Ammonia and gasoline work for removing the skunk's scent out of clothing
- Carbolic soap and water are best for washing skin
- The best skunk spray removal uses 1 quart hydrogen peroxide, ¼ cup baking soda, and 1-2 tsp liquid dish soap mixed together in a bucket. Use this solution on pets, clothes, etc. Rinse and repeat if necessary.
- Pelts of the striped skunk are not highly valued, but the musk, once its odor is removed, is used as a perfume base due to its clinging quality