Wednesday, March 12, 2014

What Does The Skunk Say?

You know that song about foxes?
Well I wondered the same about skunks.
I thought they were silent. Not so.

My mom just caught skunk #11 in her back yard the other day. Yes, you read that correctly. Eleven skunks. Which is shocking, considering my parents live in the suburbs--the kind of neighborhood where, if you stand in between two houses and stretch your arms out, you can almost touch brick with both hands.

It all started several years ago, when they had a shed built behind the house. Skunks eventually took up residence underneath the structure.




My parents trapped a couple, but then my father took ill and was unable to do that kind of thing anymore. Mom could set the trap, but because the professional that hauls them off is so costly, she gave up.


Side note: I took this picture of #11 when I went to do some work in mom's back yard. This little fella had been trying to dig his way out so diligently, he nearly counter-sunk the cage. (The person who hauls them off hadn't come to move him yet.) I told mom I must really love her to venture into a yard with a skunk to prune her trees. :P  Strangely enough, the skunk got quiet and lay down most of the time we were out there. We just made sure not to get too close.

Anyhow, back to the story...

Jump forward three years later. Mom discovered a way to move the occupied cage and haul the creatures off without getting sprayed, and her neighbor agreed to help. They started setting the trap nearly every night, and in a few weeks, they'd caught themselves a total of eleven skunks. But that's not the best part.

One morning during this marathon of trapping, mom awoke to a ruckus. At first, she thought some cats were fighting outside her window, but it didn't really sound like cats. She peered out and discovered it was skunks. Somehow, two of them had gotten caught in the trap at once. The silly things were fighting each other and squealing like pigs!

This was a major problem because the ongoing agitation made it impossible for the neighbor to get close enough to the cage to haul them off. He had to crush up some sleeping pills, mix it in some bait, and lower it down into the cage with a fishing pole so the skunks would knock out long enough for him to move them and release them into the wild.

I found a video on YouTube that shows the method they used.



And now you know how to safely catch and release a skunk.
Bet you never thought you'd learn that on a writer's blog. :)


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22 comments:

  1. Heh, first thing that came to mind: Ring-ding-ding-ding-dingeringeding!

    That's a ton of skunks. She's gotten 11 in a few weeks? Man, that stinks! *giggle*

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  2. I so enjoyed reading this! 11 skunks? Yikes!

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  3. LOL, I've always wondered how to catch a skunk - thank goodness I know how now! ;)

    This post was so much fun - what a great story. Although, I really do feel for your mom. Eleven skunks... EW. They're so cute, but soooo smelly.

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  4. Informative. Now I know what the skunk says.

    Wondering how I can work this into a book. :)

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  5. I always thought skunks were kind of cute, with the way they walk and scrunch up their noses. But, I agree, what a nuisance!
    Hope you mom caught them all.

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  6. Wow its a skunk extravaganza in her back yard. Maybe the like the scent of her yard or just see how much they can annoy. They multiply like rabbits.

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  7. Yikes! We had a skunk that ventured into our basement in Upstate NY once. Of course, he arrived the day before a bunch of family came into town to stay with us. Darn skunk.

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  8. They squeal like pigs? I never knew that.
    Eleven is a lot of skunks. Hope that was it.

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  9. It's skunkapalooza in your mom's back yard!

    We get ground hogs in our barn. One time my husband opened the barn door to check on the happy trap, and closed it just as quickly. He'd trapped a skunk instead. Quite a jolt when that's not what you're expecting. It took some planning and impromptu supplies to get it relocated.

    Hope that's the end of the skunk invasion for your mom!

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  10. The shed outside my mom's house has groundhogs living under it, so at least they don't smell. It sounds like all the skunks told each other that your parent's house is the place to be.

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  11. Skunks squeal like pigs! And foxes, in the middle of the night, sound like a baby human crying.

    Thank you for this, my human friend. I have a human skunk to catch!

    Pawsitive wishes,

    Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar!

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  12. Well since everyone else is moving to the suburbs, I guess the skunks want to do it as well :)

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  13. Wow! That's a lot of skunkin' going on. Do they spray when they get agitated like that? We don't have skunk problems by our house, but I know some do. They are kind of cute if you don't have to smell or trap them ;)

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    1. They spray a little when mildly agitated. That's how mom knows she still has some. A faint skunk odor wafts through the yard if she makes noise near the shed. ;)

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  14. We don't have any skunks here in Belgium. A pity, I think.

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  15. We don't have skunks here in our country-thankfully. But I think the same problem exists with mongoose.

    Nas

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  16. Aww, man! My comment didn't post yesterday. I told you about the raccoons that hang from my doorknob and peer in the window. xD

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    1. I'll trade you--racoons for skunks. :)

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  17. I grew up in the back woods of Mass. and this sounds way more adventurous and wildlife-y than anything that happened there. I'd be terrified to get anywhere near a skunk cage - I'm sure I'd end up sprayed. Great post!! :)

    (Side note: Just before I hit "Publish" I realized there was a typo. I wrote spayed instead of sprayed. Haha! Yes, if I got spayed, it would be even worse than getting sprayed.)

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    1. LOL

      I told mom she needed to check this post from time to time... that the comments would be better than the story. xD

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    2. Yikes! We've seen skunks around the neighborhood, too (and we're not in the wild). Once, we heard a skunk fighting with our neighbor's cat over the cat food!

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  18. Sorry your mother has skunks.

    Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

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