Skunks in your yard? Are you having a problem with skunks raiding your bird feeders? A skunk will come at dusk and during the night to eat at a bird feeder. A skunk will also tear up your yard looking for grubs. It will look like the yard has been thatched with 1” diameter holes.
Skunks are small, furry animals with black and white stripes. Some skunks are striped, and some are spotted or have swirl patterns on their fur. No matter the pattern, the black-and-white coloring is a warning sign to anyone who may harm this small creature. They pack a wallop of a defense mechanism — noxious odors produced from their well-developed scent glands.
The skunk’s most memorable trait is its smell. When frightened, skunks will shoot a smelly, oily substance from a gland underneath their tails with a range of up to 10 feet! (According to National Geographic) The scent from this gland can last for days, but isn’t harmful. Most animals leave skunks alone unless they can’t find other prey. Before spraying, a spotted skunk will do a handstand on its front paws and aim its tail without taking its eyes off its attacker.
Skunks are omnivores, which means they eat both meat and vegetation. Their diet consists of plants, insects, larvae, worms, fruit, eggs, reptiles, small mammals and fish.
Other Animals in Your Yard
A raccoon will also dig in a yard to look for grubs. The damage they do will be deeper and wide spread. Skunks live under sheds, brush piles, wood piles and abandoned ground hog holes. As our gardens grow, woodchucks will eat the green leafy plants. Skunks and raccoons will eat the sweet corn.
Woodchucks and ground hogs are very active this time of year. They will make a hole under a garage or shed, pass through under a fence, or dig hole in a random spot. They can do a ton of damage to a cement floor in a building or around the foundation of your home. A woodchuck will burrow a long tunnel under cement. The cement could fail when driving on these areas. They will eat all vegetation.