Skunks may look cute but they can be a pest. Sure, they are well known for leaving that awful smell behind when they get scared, but they can also make a real mess of your yard if they get into the trash!
If you grow your own vegetables, there’s nothing a skunk likes more than to dig up your beds on the hunt for food.
Skunks aren’t aggressive towards humans or pets but they can be a nuisance. Once you have smelled a startled skunk, you’ll never forget it!
If you have skunks in your yard who like to come calling on trash day, there are a few humane methods that can help keep them at bay.
As pest control experts with many years’ experience and a retailer of non-lethal pest control products, we have the knowledge and experience to offer actionable methods to get rid of skunks.
First, let’s make sure it’s a skunk you’re actually dealing with.
Sure signs of skunks in your yard
There are a few signs that you might be dealing with a skunk rather than squirrel, chipmunk or other critter.
The smell – Once you smell skunk spray, you’ll never mistake it for anything else. If you, a pet or something else startles a skunk, they emit a terrible smell a bit like sulphur or rotten eggs.
There’s nothing else quite like it!
Catch them on camera – Skunks are primarily nocturnal so you’re unlikely to meet one during the day. However, if you have cameras on your property, you may see them nosing around looking for food. If the critter is black with a white stripe, it’s a skunk.
Damage to trash bags or vegetable patches – Skunks aren’t destructive until it comes to finding food. Then all bets are off. If your trash bags are torn open during the night or something is digging up your veg patch, it could be a skunk. It could also be other mammals too so more investigation might be needed.
Skunks don’t just eat vegetables. If you keep chickens, skunks will eat both the chicken and the egg!
Humane ways to get rid of skunks
If you have a skunk problem, you don’t have to bring in the exterminators to get rid of them. There are some practical, humane ways to get rid of skunks and other pests.
Use bins for trash
Skunks will visit your yard to look for food. Remove all food sources and they will quickly move on. Using a bin for your trash bags is a simple and effective way to remove a food source. It also makes your yard look and smell much nicer! Use a bin with a lid and optionally, use a bin shed or keep the bin in your garage. Anything you can do to prevent skunks from accessing trash will help.
Use an ultrasonic pest repellent
If hiding your trash isn’t enough to dissuade skunks, you could try an ultrasonic pest repellent like Stake2Repel.
The device can be spiked into your lawn and emits an ultrahigh frequency sound. That sound is inaudible to humans and most pets but audible to pests like skunks.
The sound is enough to prevent skunks from coming near your yard. What’s more, it has a tunable frequency setting that works on many other types of pests too.
It’s controllable from your phone using Bluetooth and can work fully automatically thanks to a passive infrared detector.
Stake2Repel works on skunks, deer, raccoons, squirrels, rabbits, bats, owls, foxes, coyotes and all manner of mammal pests.
Use citrus peel
Citrus is effective on a range of pests, including skunks. It’s a little more laborious than using an automatic repellent but it’s also natural and cheap. If you live somewhere you can have your own orange or lemon tree, you have a ready supply of ingredients!
Peel a citrus fruit and sprinkle it over your vegetable patch, around your chicken coop or close to your trash. Keep the peel refreshed and replace it when it dries out.
Many mammals dislike citrus intensely and this can be an effective remedy for the odd skunk visit.
It may also stop your cat from visiting those places too though as they also hate citrus!
Homemade pest repellent spray
You could also use a homemade pest repellent spray. Boil some hot peppers, jalapeno, cayenne and others with an onion in some hot water for a little while. Strain the water into a spray bottle and let it cool.
Regularly spray your trash bin or area and the ground around your chickens or vegetables. You’ll need to keep the spray fresh and do it regularly but it’s another humane way to get rid of skunks!
Skunks in your yard
Skunks are usually harmless mammals that come calling at night. You’ll hardly ever see one, but they can leave a mess behind!
If your yard is receiving nocturnal visitors, prevention is always better than cure. We share the world with animals but we don’t have to share our yards too.
One of these humane methods could easily deter pests from your property without harming them, you, your pets or your children.
We definitely recommend using a trash bin as it has many more benefits than just deterring skunks.
For more stubborn visitors, an ultrasonic deterrent works wonders. It’s automatic, solar powered and can deter more than just skunks.
If you don’t mind a little work, citrus peel or the homemade deterrent spray should both work too.
All can protect your yard and your nose without harming the animal. That has to be worth trying, right?
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