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Category: Field Mice Control | 22.06.2015
The striped skunk is known for its distinctive white stripe markings on its back extending from head to tail.  Fully grown skunks weigh an average of 12 lbs. The striped skunk can be found throughout all of Ontario and although they are not true hibernators, they can be dormant for extended periods of time during the winter months.
Skunks will chew and burrow though wood and siding and this can result in costly and dangerous structural damage. Skunks normally mate from February to March.  The average gestation period is about 60 days and litters range from 3 to as many as 10 young. Since skunks are nocturnal animals, they are most active at night and it can be difficult to identify them on your property. Dead and decomposing skunks can attract insects and cause putrid odours that can last for months.
Skunks can spray 6 to 10 meters with great accuracy and they have great confidence in defending themselves against threats.
Before a skunk attacks, it will quickly warn potential threats by stamping its front feet, clicking its teeth, hissing and lifting its tail in the direction it intends to spray. For the trapping of Skunks use fish, bacon, or chicken parts for bait in the trap and place near the hole of the den where the skunks are entering and exiting. The skunk has short, stocky legs and proportionately large feet equipped with well-devel- oped claws that enable it to be very adept at digging. The striped skunk is characterized by prominent, lateral white stripes that run down its back.

The body of the striped skunk is about the size of an ordinary house cat (up to 29 inches [74 em] long and weighing about 8 pounds [3.6 kg] ). The spotted skunk is smaller (up to 21 inches [54 em] long and weighing about 2.2 pounds [1 kg]), more weasel- like, and is readily distinguishable by white spots and short, broken white stripes in a dense jet-black coat. The hooded skunk (Mephitis macroura) is identified by hair on the neck that is spread out into a ruff. The hog-nosed skunk (Conepatus leucontus) has a long snout that is hairless for about 1 inch (2.5 em) at the top. Skunks have the ability to dis- charge nauseating musk from the anal glands and are capable of several discharges, not just one. Spotted skunks are uncommon in some areas, but distributed through- out most of the United States and northern Mexico .
The hooded skunk and the hog-nosed skunk are much less common than striped and spotted skunks. The hog-nosed skunk is found in southern Colorado, central and southern New Mexico, the southern half of Texas, and northern Mexico. Food Habits Skunks eat plant and animal foods in about equal amounts during fall and winter. Field and house mice are regular and important items in the skunk diet, particularly in winter.

Damage and Damage Identification Skunks become a nuisance when their burrowing and feeding habits conflict with humans. Skunks dig holes in lawns, golf courses, and gar- dens to search for insect grubs found in the soil. If skunks gall access, they will normally feed on the eggs and occasionally kill one or two fowl. Sometimes dogs, cats, or other animals that have been sprayed by skunks move under houses and make owners mistakenly think skunks are present. Any skunk showing abnormal behavior, such as daytime activity, may be rabid and should be treated with caution. Damage Prevention and Control Methods Exclusion Keep skunks from denning under buildings by sealing off all foundation openings. It may be necessary to install aluminum guards around the bases of hives if skunks attempt to climb the supports. Rodent control programs may be necessary to eliminate this attraction.Debris such as lumber, fence posts, and junk cars provide shelter for skunks, and may encourage them to use an area.

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