Skunks

Baby skunks – “kits” -- take refuge in an old log.

Have you noticed all the skunks in Idaho County? It seems like every time you turn around, the air is wafting with that distinct smell, you see a black and white blur waddle across the road or even one run over.

The Old Farmers’ Almanac 2020 lists a variety of ways to ward off these nocturnal pests:

Farmers' Almanac

*Spray a mixture of castor oil and dish-washing detergent diluted in water. Skunks find the smell offensive. Spray the area at night when the skunk is away foraging.

*Probably the best skunk repellent is a light. Skunks are nocturnal and their eyes are very light sensitive. A bright light or a motion sensor flood light will scare skunks away.

*Most animals, including skunks, dislike the smell of citrus fruits. Place orange or lemon peels around the yard as a natural skunk repellent.

*Predator urine (dogs, coyotes) can be used to repel a skunk. These are commercially sold in garden centers. (Note: Use a responsible source for predator urine to make sure that the animals are treated humanely, and the brand complies with state and federal regulations.)

*Many readers have found success placing ammonia-soaked rags around the yard, however, these need to be replaced often.

*If the skunks are in a smaller garden patch, put bars of strong–smelling soap or a room deodorizer near your garden. Ironically, skunks hate strong scents.

*If nothing works, there are humane ways for professionals to trap raccoons and skunks and transport them elsewhere. Often, skunk removal by trapping is the only answer, and there just isn’t a lot you can do if it is a skunk. However, be aware that many species of wildlife do not survive when placed in a new territory, and it may not even be legal to trap and relocate wild animals in your area.

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