How To Get Rid of Skunks: The Ultimate Guide

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Having skunks around your home stinks. Not only do they carry diseases there’s the risk of being sprayed with that deadly scent. 

You might be thinking of the best way to get rid of skunks. 

Don’t worry. I got you covered.

In this post, I will go over the 4 best ways to get rid of skunks once and for all. 

Let’s get started. 

1. Kill Skunks

Killing a skunk to get rid of it is something that you should consider carefully.

Make sure to do your research on the legal restrictions where you live.

Some areas, for example, have laws against using poison to kill skunks. Other areas may not allow you to use guns. 

Be sure you follow the state or regional laws to ensure you are killing and disposing of skunks properly. 

Also, if there are any signs of rabies, it might be best to avoid killing the skunk.

Sings of rabid skunks include aggression, nervous activity, and excess salivation.

Killing it and getting the blood in the trap or on the floor can spread diseases to other pets or animals.

 

If you do suspect it has rabies, I recommend that you call local animal control, who’s equipped to deal with rabid animals.

Another thing to consider are the benefits of skunks. 

While they can be a nuisance, they are advantageous in many ways. 

One main benefit of skunks is that they eat garden and home pests, including:

  • Moles, voles, gophers 
  • Mice, rats 
  • Roaches, beetles, aphids, grubs
  • Spiders, snails, black widow spiders
  • Yellow Jackets, grasshoppers
 

The great thing is that skunks are nocturnal, which means you don’t have to contact them very often. 

 

2. Habitat Modification - Make Your Home Less Appealing

One of the best ways to get rid of skunks is to make your home less appealing to skunks. 

This is otherwise known as habitat modification. 

You can do this by: 

  • removing food
  • removing water 
  • excluding skunks 
  • eliminating potential dens 

 

Remove Food

Make food unavailable for skunks: 

  • Close all trash cans with a lid 
  • Protect gardens with a fence or small barrier to prevent skunks from getting access 
  • Clean up fallen fruit frequently 
  • Store pet food in sealed containers and do not leave outside
  • Pick up any spilled bird seeds
  • Control insect and grub populations around your home. 
 

Avoid intentionally feeding skunks.

This will cause them to return. It’s also unhealthy and unsafe for you and your family and the skunk.

The skunk will become dependent and will not be able to survive in the wild.

Remove Water

Make sure you do not have any drainage issues creating puddles of water or constant sources of water for skunks. 

Be sure to check for any: 

  • Leaky pipes 
  • Broken sprinklers 
  • Birdbaths 
  • Pooling water 
  • Broken downpipes or gutters 

Eliminate Potential Dens

Maintain the vegetation around your home.

Cut overgrown shrubs, bushes, and grass.

Declutter and remove any unnecessary items from around your house, including old furniture, wood, and trash lying around. When these items are in a large pile, skunks tend to turn them into dens.

You’ll also want to make sure you store your firewood properly. Keep your firewood stack tightly and at least 12 inches above the ground.

Exclusion

Properly seal all vents and crawl spaces around your home.

You can use a wire mesh and apply it anywhere that skunks might burrow inside to create a den.

It’s also a great idea to apply a wire mesh around barriers around cars, motorhomes, or trailers that you do not move often. Skunks will create a den under vehicles, especially if the grass or debris begins to build up.

Always close the doors in your sheds, barns, or garages. These provide warmth and darkness during the day, making a perfect skunk den.

3. Skunk Traps

Traps are one of the most intuitive ways you can get rid of skunks around your home.

They are effective and easy to use. All you need is to set up the trap where the skunk frequents.

Next, place bait inside to attract the skunk. When the skunk tries to eat the bait, the sensor will release the trap door, trapping the skunk.

I highly recommend using spray-proof skunk traps.

These traps provide walls that prevent skunks from lifting their spray and spraying.

Once you have trapped the skunk, you can get rid of it. There are three ways you can do this:

  1. Kill it 
  2. Relocate it 
  3. Call a professional 

Relocation

Relocation is one of the most humane ways of getting rid of skunks.

That said important to note that this is not an easy task. 

If a skunk feels frightened, it will spray. The best way is to use a spray- proof skunk trap.

A spray-proof skunk trap prevents skunks from lifting their tails and spraying. This trap also prevents you from being scratched or bitting. 

If you do not have a spray-proof skunk trap, here’s what you can do

1. Dress to protect

Make sure you dress correctly to protect yourself.

I recommend wearing two thin layers to quickly get out of your clothes and dispose of them if you’re sprayed.

2. Cover the skunk’s vision

As you approach the trap, hold the blanket outwards to cover the skunk’s vision as you walk towards it.

Blocking their vision will confuse skunks and stop them from spraying.

That’s because it takes a long time for skunks to build up the liquid to spray. As such, they usually do not spray unless they see their target.

This method does work, but it is not 100% effective so do so with caution.

3. Get rid of the skunk.

Find an ideal location to relocate the skunk. 

You must put careful thought into relocating the skunk in your area.

You’re usually required to have a permit to relocate the skunks where you live.

Second, you need to choose a far enough location away from your home that they won’t return. You’ll also want an area where the skunk will not invade other nearby homes.

It’s also essential that you relocate the skunk to its natural habitat.

Wooded areas that are between 5 and 10 miles from your home is perfect.

This natural habitat should have a water source and food source nearby to sustain the skunk and facilitate the transition.

4. Use Skunk Repellent

Another alternative to getting rid of skunks is using a repellent. There are several different types of repellents that you can use against skunks.

The best repellent will depend on your needs and budget.

Natural Chemical Repellents

There are two options for using chemical repellents: liquid or granules.

Chemical repellents typically use natural chemicals to repel skunks.
Two common include using essential oils such as peppermint, clove, and garlic essential oils.

The second method includes using extracts such as capsaicin, red pepper flakes, black pepper, and chili peppers.

These ingredients are known to repel skunks.

While natural chemical repellents are effective, their shelf life is not very long.

Lights and Lasers

Skunks are nocturnal and will shy away from light.

You can use this to your advantage and keep them away using a flash ultrasonic repellent. These repellents are motion activated.

When a skunk crosses the path, the lights will flash, scarring the skunk away and protecting your property.

Make sure you purchase enough devices to cover your home’s entire perimeter.

If you do not set your perimeter up properly, there can be gaps in your coverage where skunks can get in without setting off the motion sensors.

Motion Activated Sprinkler

Sprinklers are a natural lternative to keep skunks away from your home.

Be sure to strategically place the sprinklers so that the perimeter of your house is covered.

Without a full perimeter, skunks may find ways to get close to your house without getting wet.

One downside to this is that the sensor will go over for motion or animals.

Also, it may attract pests because it will provide them with a source of water.

Use these with caution, and be sure to test your sensors before you set them out for the night.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does chocolate repel Skunks?

Skunks typically have between 2 and 10 babies during each pregnancy. They typically give birth between May and June.

Baby Skunks are born without fur and stay in the den for eight weeks before leaving.

During that time, they rely completely on the mother.

When Do Skunks have babies?

Skunks typically have between 2 and 10 babies during each pregnancy. They are typically born between May and June. 

Baby Skunks are born without fur and stay in the den for eight weeks before leaving. 

During that time they rely completely on the mother. 

What Home Remedy Will Keep Away Skunks?

There are many natural options for getting rid of skunks, such as traps, exclusion or barriers, and chemical repellents.

Some of the best home remedies include using spices such as red peppers or capsaicin.

You can also use essential oils to keep skunks away.

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