What is a Skunk’s Natural Diet?

In general, skunks belong to the group of animals known as ‘omnivores’, meaning that they will eat literally anything that smells, tastes, or even looks like food. While this means that they are great at foraging, this could spell trouble for homeowners, or anyone that is dealing with an overrun of skunks in their area.

While skunk spray is not a pleasant smell to humans, skunks can benefit humans in other ways, as they will usually eat creatures that are harmful to humans. Usually, these include pests like snakes, scorpions, roaches, and even black widow spiders. According to professionals, around seventy percent of a skunk’s natural diet is made of harmful insects.

While insects are often on the menu for skunks, they are not picky eaters, and will often also go after animals that are smaller than them, as well as relatively helpless. Mice, rats and rabbits can often be targeted by skunks as well, alongside some birds that build their nests on the ground. Skunks will sometimes also go after prey such as fish and frogs, if they are plentiful in the area.

Skunks often prefer a diet of animals, these animals might not be as easily available in fall and winter, causing skunks to adjust their diet accordingly. During the colder months, skunks will still eat any insects that they can find, but move to a more plant-based diet: often, these animals will forage for plants such as corn, cherries, grapes and berries. Often, they will not climb trees for their food, instead preferring to pick their findings off the ground.

One problem that arises with a skunks’ diet, also, is that, while they are not picky eaters, they will often even resort to eating garbage that has been left out by humans. When they are entering into your neighborhood, this could cause a problem, as skunks will often spray when spooked. This foraging in garbage cans and compost bins will often cause them to come face-to-face with humans, or their pets, putting both at risk of a foul shower.

There are many things that a skunk will eat, but they are, in general, scavengers that are not picky. If you suspect that there are skunks around your home, and do not want to get sprayed, keep your garbage cans, as well as compost bins, tightly closed, preventing the problem before it starts.

Read the How to get rid of skunks page for helpful information and to learn more about What is a Skunk’s Natural Diet?

What is a Skunk’s Natural Diet?

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