There’s that characteristic scent that tells you without question that a skunk has taken up residence nearby. It’s not very pleasant from afar and up close it is positively nauseating. If you’ve ever had a pet that was sprayed – or worse, caught a spray yourself – you know how bad it can be. The best way to ensure that no one in your household has to endure this temporary yet horrible condition is to make sure you don’t share space with these creatures.
Wild animals like skunks want what we all need: food, water and shelter. Cut off access to these things and most of your problem will be contained. It’s a humane solution and one that is sensitive to the environment.
A plentiful source of food is one of the first things that will attract skunks and just about any other unwanted pests. You might be providing a buffet dinner without even realizing it. Getting rid of the food is half the battle. Here are a few ways to start.
- Gardens. This excellent source of roughage and nutrients is healthy for you but a boon to skunks. Ask your pest control specialist about how to make sure skunks don’t get into your garden.
- Outdoor pet bowls. If you have outdoor pets, create a feeding routine. Don’t leave bowls of feed or kibble out all day and night. Skunks are more than happy to help your outdoor animals clean their plates.
- Birdfeeders. Skunks aren’t opposed to seeds and nuts as a snack. They’ll forage under your birdfeeders for whatever the birds have rejected.
- Garbage cans. Leave that lid loose and skunks will find a way to get it open. Make sure you have garbage cans that lock tightly.
- Compost piles. If you garden, you’ve probably got a compost pile of vegetable matter slowly turning into soil. That’s also skunk food. Get a locking compost bin or build a closed housing for your compost.
Skunks need to hydrate just like us. Water sources like a dripping hose or water feature will fill this need. Keep up with your property and eliminate standing water wherever you can. As an added bonus, this will also cut back on mosquitoes.
A nice, safe place to sleep is important to skunks. They like dark, cave-like spaces like under the foundations or porch. Make sure all accesses to these locations are well blocked. Use lattice and foundation vent covers to prevent skunks from getting underneath.
Cut off their sources of food, water and shelter and most skunks will move on to greener pastures. If you have persistent skunks, call in a professional pest control company to help you get rid of them.