Habitat- skunks are most commonly found in open grasslands near forests or woods where there is a large population of trees where they can hide if they are under attack. Despite this preference of habitat, it has been observed that skunks still come into regular contact with human beings and the world we live in. Four types of skunks are found in North America, of which the most common is the black and white striped variety. These very often turn up on our properties and, once there, create a home and start breeding. The most common places they make their homes in our garages, sheds, or even burrowed holes under the patio or house.
Dangers- a fully grown skunk weighs around eight pounds and possesses extremely sharp claws to dig and burrow. They also prefer to remain hidden and not seek confrontation. Unfortunately, regular contact happens because humans and skunks are in such proximity to each other. Even more than humans, skunks come in contact with domestic pets. Skunks are very rarely rabid, but they are capable of carrying and transmitting the rabies virus. In the case of a confrontation, they can be extremely aggressive and dangerous. While their rotten stench is a problem, it is comparatively small compared to the physical harm they can inflict on you. Especially in houses where there are domestic pets, it is important to vaccinate them, so they don’t contract the virus themselves.
Avoidance- to avoid the threat of physical harm or even infestation of your property, the first thing you should do is make sure that your house is extremely unappealing to skunks. Maintain short grass with no large amounts of logs or trees. Make sure there is no accumulation of garden rubbish or waste where they can make themselves a home. Also, the fences and walls on the boundaries of your property should be securely fixed along with a foundation of fencing or cement to prevent them from digging or burrowing under. You should also make sure that there are no mice, moles, or garden produce lying around, as this constitutes the diet of skunks. They also like to scavenge for scraps from the garbage bins.
Removal- in case you are faced with an infestation, make sure you employ the services of a trained professional to help you get rid of the skunks. Because it can be aggressive and dangerous when confronted, it is important not to try to tackle the problem independently with no training, knowledge, or skills. Only properly trained professionals to know how to deal with such problems and carefully efficiently. Engaging with skunks in a foolhardy manner could give rise to several problems that can otherwise be easily avoided by seeking professionals’ help.