How to Get Rid of Skunks in Your Yard? – Easy Solutions for Immediate Results!
Have you noticed pulled grass and holes that randomly show up in your garden? If this has been happening for a while, you probably have a case of skunks invading the premises. Why does this happen? How much damage can they cause? Is it preventable? Here you’ll find the answers to all those questions along with useful tips on how to get rid of skunks in your yard!
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What Attracts Skunks to a Yard?
The black and white mammals may look cute at first sight, but they are certainly not guests you would like to welcome in your garden. Unfortunately, they usually come uninvited and unless you take measures, they won’t take the initiative to remove themselves from your property. You’ll be surprised to find out how easy it is to invite the mischievous skunks in your yard. Their main aim is to look for food. They will dig holes in the ground and pull the grass in search of grubs, larvae, hornworms, and other types of insects. If they haven’t found what they need in the dirt, they will move onto your garbage. Skunks are especially fond of fruit, so keep that in mind if you ever decide to leave your compost bags outside.
How do You Know if You Have a Skunk Invasion?
Skunks are not among the most discreet species out there. They make their presence known, and they like to leave a mark. Here are some signs you can look out for:
- Paw prints – A skunk’s prints are really easy to distinguish. The front paws are small, similar in size to those of a cat but with longer claws, and oftentimes leave traces of seeds or insects. The back ones on the other hand are more elongated, also with claws, although they are slightly shorter than those at the front. A skunk’s paw has 5 toes, and their claws never retract.
- Check under your porch – Because these mammals don’t hibernate during the winter, they search for hiding spots, usually in dark and warm places. They are nocturnal, so if you have a chicken coop, you can spot them there during the evening trying to get a hold of your chickens’ eggs. Their most common hideout, however, is under porches. Inspect all possible areas during the winter, as skunks start to mate in January.
- Sharp smell – We’ve all heard about the distinct smell of the skunk, but how do we know what it is if we’ve never smelled it before? The closest thing you can compare it to is sulfur and rotten eggs, but that barely scratches the surface of their pungent odor. Mix that with mud, garlic, and the smell of burning tires, and you’ll get a pretty decent idea of their natural perfume.
- Random holes – Unless you or someone from your family likes to dig holes in their sleep, your yard has been invaded by skunks. How would recognize their burrows? There are two kinds – smaller ones for food, and bigger ones for hiding. They’re usually quite deep and up to 8 inches wide.
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How to Get Rid of Skunks in Your Yard?
Once you’ve inspected your outdoor area and are 100% sure that skunks are paying you regular visits, it’s time to take further measures for their removal, as well as skunk-proofing the premises. Some useful tips that you can implement are:
- Reach out to professionals – Dealing with these animals is no child’s play, especially if this is your first encounter with them. It’s best you reach out to pest control specialists and have them deal with the matter.
- Lightning – As we already mentioned above, skunks are nocturnal animals. A short-term solution would be to install outdoor motion sensor lights. This will keep them off your yard for a while, but make sure you take further action, as sooner or later they will adapt and return.
- Get one step ahead of them – Skunks love grubs. This is the main reason why they take over people’s gardens. Grubs live on the top layer of the soil, which makes it incredibly easy for these curious animals to dig them out. What you can do is remove the larvae from the grass before they have a chance to get to it.
- Seal your garbage cans – Skunks will do the unimaginable to supply themselves with food. This drive may force them to even dig in your garbage cans in search of leftovers. To stop this from happening, you can use bungee cords to seal the bins closed.
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