When you think of skunks, the first thing that comes to mind is probably the putrid smell that they release. Despite this pungent odor, they can cause other problems. You should be aware that they carry diseases, and what you can do to avoid having an encounter with a skunk.
Your Introduction To Skunks
Facts and useful information to know if you encounter a skunk include:
- Size: They grow anywhere from 8–19 inches long. Their tails can add an extra 5–15 inches to their overall body length.
- Body: Weighing around 7–14 pounds they have black fur with white stripes. While some skunks have stripes, others may have swirls or spots on their fur.
- Habitat: Commonly found throughout North and South America, skunks usually live in forests, woodlands, and grasslands. They typically reside in abandoned burrows.
- Diet: Skunks are omnivores, so they eat both plants and animals. Their diet primarily consists of plants, fruits, and larvae.
- Habits: If frightened, skunks will shoot a smelly, oily substance from underneath their tails with a range of up to 10 feet. They do this in self-defense as the smell is so unbearable it will drive away any predators.
- Smell: While the stench of the liquid they spray out is not harmful to health, it can, however, linger for days.
- Behavior: Skunks are nocturnal in nature and hunt for food while other animals are resting, but it is not uncommon to see them during the day.
- Other Traits: Before spraying, a skunk will often charge its attacker, stomp its front legs, and hiss. They are not hostile by nature but will spray you if they feel threatened.
Skunks As Pests
Typically skunks pose no real harm to humans, but there are certain things about them which have the potential to be threatening.
- The odor released by skunks induces what is known as Skunk Toxic Shock Syndrome in pets. It sets in when a pet is trapped in an area up against a skunk.
- Skunks have the potential to spread rabies with their bite. In the United States, skunks are the most common carriers of rabies after bats.
- They can carry Baylisascaris Columnaris which is a threatening type of roundworm present in their feces. Other diseases carried by skunks include Canine Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Tularemia and Q Fever.
What You Can Do Against Skunks
- Seal off any entry point that you suspect a skunk could be using to prevent re-entry.
- Fruits, vegetables, dry leaves, and other possible food sources that are attracting skunks should be removed from your garden or lawn.
If a situation should come up where you have to face a skunk, follow these tips to avoid getting sprayed:
- Hold a large towel or sheet in front of you all the way down to your toes when approaching.
- You must approach very slowly and calmly so it won’t become startled and spray you.
- Upon reaching the skunk, you should drop the towel or sheet onto it as skunks do not spray if they can’t see their target. This is due to their weak eyesight.
Quest Pest Control Skunk Control Services
Often homeowners will try to remove skunks on their own but result in getting sprayed or even worse bitten. Therefore, if you are having a skunk problem, you should turn to the professionally trained experts at Quest Pest Control and their skunk control services to effectively take care of the situation.
The following steps are taken by our staff to make your household skunk-free:
- Our experts will design a plan according to your situation and household that is affordable and will produce results.
- We have an exclusive range of smell and taste deterrents for applications. Spraying these repellents in skunk infested areas will interfere with a skunk’s acute senses, causing it to flee.
- There is also the live trap option. It is incredibly effective in catching skunks without harming them. Along with our live bait system, this method has never failed.
If you are having problems with skunks on your property, and are afraid to encounter them, contact Quest Pest Control for our expert skunk control services. We will make certain your property becomes skunk-free with our proven effective methods.