April 5, 2016

Sniff, sniff. Yuck what is that smell?


Springtime is such a great time to start getting outdoors and caring for the lawn and garden.  While people and pets enjoy this season and the warm weather it brings, so do the other critters that have been hibernating away the winter. In particular is everyone’s least favorite smelling critter- the skunk!

It’s that time of year again when the skunks begin to venture out for food. The remaining odor after a skunk has visited your yard is bad enough, but what if one of these malodorous creatures decides to make a home in your yard, or worse yet, sprays you or your pets?  Well, you are in luck! Just this month the Massachusetts Fish and Game Department published some great tricks and tips to deal with these stinkers.  Let’s take a look at what they suggest as well as some of our own tricks of the trade from the pest management perspective.

  • Make your Yard Unwelcome – Skunks love to raid open garbage cans and pet food that is left outside and unsecured. Secure your garbage cans with a locking lid and put all pet food indoors at night. Take out trash the morning pick up is scheduled, not the previous night. Keep compost piles in containers designed to contain but vent the material.
  • Secure Areas to Hide and Find Shelter – Every yard has these hidden areas whether they are under a shed, next to a bulkhead, under a deck, or around crawl spaces near your foundation. Since skunks will use such areas for resting and raising young, be sure to secure these areas well with mesh or chicken wire or some other form of protection.
  • Protect your Pets – Before sending Fido out each night to do his business be sure to turn on any outside floodlights to deter a skunk from entering your property, or to scare away any skunk that may already be out there. When possible use a loud noise to also scare away any critter that could be lurking in your yard.
  • Protect Yourself – Should you encounter a skunk, speak softly and move away in order to give it room to leave. Once you back away, the skunk will no longer feel threatened and will move off. If it doesn’t, try clapping your hands and making some noise from a safe distance.
  • Call Pest-End – If you notice skunks are regularly visiting your yard each night, you may have a problem.  Call Pest-End for an inspection to be sure they have not found safe harbor in your yard somewhere.


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