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Use These 6 Brilliant Ways To Get Rid Of Skunks In Your Yard And Avoid Stinky Spray

Use These 6 Brilliant Ways To Get Rid Of Skunks In Your Yard And Avoid Stinky Spray

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Skunks are super cute little creatures… until they’re not. Once they wreak havoc in your yard, they’ll be anything but cute to you. I learned it the hard way, and these little charmers aren’t welcome in my yard anymore.

I believe you already know that the damage they can cause in a yard isn’t the only bad thing about skunks. Once they feel threatened, they’ll do the most disgusting thing I’ve ever heard of. They’ll spray you and that stinky odor will be very hard to eliminate. 

I mean, I don’t blame them for having their own way of dealing with danger, but come on, stinky spray?!

The thing is that skunks are smart cookies and they won’t leave your yard easily. So, I’ve been looking for different ways to get rid of them and, luckily, some methods do work. 

But let’s first see if repelling skunks should really be your priority. 

Garden Skunks: Befriend Them Or Deter Them For Good?

Why on earth would anyone be friends with skunks or feel comfortable with their presence? Well, every living being on this planet has its purpose, and skunks aren’t an exception. 

As you would expect, they’re skilled hunters, but what do they hunt? For starters, they’ll munch on lawn grubs, hornworms, grasshoppers, and notorious Japanese beetles

They’ll also keep your garden free of voles and mice, and trust me, these guys are even more dangerous for your property. 

What I found fascinating about skunks is that they’re a nomadic species and they typically don’t hang in gardens for a long time. Who could’ve guessed that they’re travel junkies?

So, one option is to let them go because they’ll most probably leave on their own.

But if that doesn’t happen, such as in my case, you might want to proceed to a permanent solution – without harming them, of course. 

If skunks make a baby nest (we call these kits), it will be very hard to convince them to leave. Dog owners should be very careful with skunks because, more often than not, your curious furry friends will be sprayed if they come too close. 

I watched my neighbor trying to remove the smell from their dog and it took them hours. You won’t be surprised to hear that we became allies and fought skunks together after that!

If You Notice These Things, Chances Are You Definitely Have A Skunk Issue

It’s easy to know you have a skunk issue if you spot the animals or smell the scent. Hopefully, the latter won’t be the way you found out. 

But if there are some weird things going on in your yard and you can’t identify the culprit, here are the telltale signs of skunk activity. 

• Your compost pile is totally rummaged through and trash cans are all turned over. 

Edible plants are missing. The favorite dinner of these creatures is sweet corn. If you grow this plant and some cobs are suddenly missing, skunks are to blame. 

3-4 inch deep holes in the lawn and garden can also occur if skunks visited your property the night before.

If you want to make your garden skunk-free, here are methods that can help you.  

The Best Strategy: Deter And PREVENT

Your main goal is to make your yard totally unattractive to skunks. Don’t worry, you’ll still like the appearance of your outdoor space. 

1. Stop Being Their Food Supplier

The number one way to get rid of moles, voles, skunks, and other annoying creatures is to eliminate all their food sources. 

I started by purchasing new trash cans with sealable lids. Then, instead of classic compost piles, I switched to compost bins.

If you have bird feeders, I’m afraid you’ll need to get rid of them (sorry birds, but I really need a skunk-free garden). You should also install a fence around your veggie garden, just make sure to dig it deep because skunks will try to break it. 

2. Use The Help Of Deterrent Sprays

The great news is that some classic skunk deterrents still work. Castor oil and sprays with capsaicin as the main ingredient can help you repel skunks.

Fragrant bar soap will also do the job. My secret ingredient is citrus peels; I just scatter them over my yard and their strong scent keeps the skunks at bay.

Remember, you want to deter skunks without harming them, so please don’t use ammonia or mothballs. They’re poisonous to skunk babies and can harm other wildlife in your yard.

3. Seal The Entry Points!

You removed the food sources, now remove the shelters! If you have a porch or shed, check if there’s an empty space beneath them. If so, make sure to seal them all.

Always inspect these spaces carefully and don’t seal them until you’re 100% sure there aren’t any kits trapped inside!

4. Motion-Activated Lights And Sprinklers Are Game Changers

I hate motion-activated sprinklers and I’m sure you can guess the reason. But they’re super beneficial for keeping skunks at bay. 

The same applies to motion-sensor lights. Skunks are sensitive to bright light and they’re nocturnal animals, so it’s a win-win!

5. Add Regular Yard Cleaning To Your To-Do List

Yes, I know you keep your yard clean, but you’ll need to put in more effort if you have a skunk issue.

Skunks can easily hide in tall grasses, so make sure to trim regularly. If you have some wood piles or rock piles, make sure to clean them too or you’ll have a wildlife party!

6. For The Brave And Skilled: Trap And Move Skunks

The last thing you can do, and think twice before you decide, is to physically remove these critters. Well, it’s a way to get rid of skunks but at what costs?

First and foremost, skunks may not survive relocation. And remember, your goal is to deter not to harm!

Second, and I believe you can guess this one, is you risk being sprayed! Honestly, if all the methods above fail, I would contact professionals. 

However, if you already have some experience with similar nuisances, you can proceed with the trap and move method. You’ll need to use live traps and follow all the laws for relocation into the wild provided by the local authorities.

Here in Florida, we have a lot of professionals to consult with and it’s legal to trap and move skunks. On the other hand, in some states, such as Missouri, there’s been a decline in the skunk population, so be very careful with any methods! 

I know that getting rid of skunks isn’t an easy task. But if these guys keep coming to your yard and there’s no sign they’ll leave any time soon, the methods above will save you the damaged lawn and, even more importantly, getting sprayed!