How To Kill A Skunk
Skunks are one of the animals with the worst reputation, largely due to their ability to spray an area with a scent that will not leave for days to months despite every attempt to remove it. In addition to this, they can dig multiple holes in your property in search of grubs and other food items. These factors lead many homeowners to do anything it takes to get skunks off their land, including killing them. The thing to remember is that there is always a better alternative to killing skunks. There are methods of preventing them from getting on your property in the first place and ways to remove them yourself or with the help of a professional. If, however, you are positive that your only option is to kill the skunk, then there are a few options for methods.
One of the biggest considerations when you have decided to kill a skunk is to check whether it is even legal to do so in your area. Some areas will have restrictions on whether you can kill skunks, in what circumstances you can do so, or what methods you can use. Always research these regulations before killing a skunk to avoid punishment. You should also make a conscious effort to select the most humane method of killing that is available to you. It is ideal to minimize the suffering experienced by the skunk since it is an innocent animal who was simply in the wrong place.
There are various lethal traps available for sale and the most common of these is the body grip trap. This type of trap will catch the skunk and close tightly on its body, theoretically killing the animal instantly. While they do typically kill on impact, it is possible that the skunk will live even after being caught in a lethal trap, in which case it would be in an extreme amount of pain. Lethal traps also run the risk of catching an unintended target, such as your dog, the neighborhood cat, or even a small child.
An alternative is to use a live cage trap to catch the skunk as you would before relocating it. While the animal is trapped, you will have an easy target to shoot or kill with a lethal injection or gas. Each of these methods, however, have their own problems. Additionally, if you have already gone through the trouble of trapping the skunk while it is alive, it makes sense to simply drive a few miles and relocate the animal, giving it a chance at survival.
If you decide that the best way to kill a skunk is via poison, then you will have some issues finding one. That is because you won't find any registered or legal poisons that can kill skunks. Some people suggest using rat poisons like anticoagulants, bromethalin, or cholecalciferol, but none of these will always work on skunks. They also will not kill the animal instantly even if they do work properly, giving it up to a day and a half of painful misery while slowly dying. Worst of all, as with lethal traps, there is no guarantee that the skunk will be the one to eat the poison. You can easily accidentally kill a domestic pet or some other wildlife.
Assuming that you have good aim and are an experienced shooter, there are multiple issues associated with trying to shoot a skunk. Keep in mind that the animal can spray up to a distance of 10 feet so you will have to stand at least this far away to avoid being sprayed with the skunk's foul odor. Additionally, skunks that cause problems tend to be in areas with other people or animals. This can make it challenging to shoot the skunk without injuring anyone else. Finally, to accurately shoot and kill a skunk, you will most likely need to use a particular caliber bullet and this caliber will lead to a significant amount of blood released, leaving a mess to clean up and increasing the risk of disease.
You may be wondering what you should do if killing a skunk isn't the ideal solution. The best idea would be to prevent skunks from ever coming onto your property in the first place. Do this by making your yard as unappealing as possible to the animals. This means cleaning up potential food sources such as pet food and garbage as well as clearing away potential shelters, such as hollow logs.
Alternatives: Live Trapping
If there is a skunk on your property that you need to get rid of and it won't go away with humane harassment, then you can try live trapping and relocation. Simply select a live cage trap that will comfortable fit the animal, place it by the entrance to their den, and put some bait inside. Check the trap regularly and when you have caught the skunk, drive it to a location at least five miles away where it can easily find food and shelter. Doing so gives the animal a chance to live and lets you live without a skunk on your property.
Read the How to get rid of skunks page for helpful information and to learn more about How To Kill A Skunk
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