Monday, December 1, 2014

Spotted skunk in my pantry!

We received a great email this week from Chris in Cumberland County, Virginia about a skunk in his parent's pantry.  His parents were in their 80's so he was not sure whether or not to believe them, but he set a trap and when his father called at 11:30 that evening it turned out to be an eastern spotted skunk!

Thankfully Chris noticed the animal as being unique from the more common striped skunk and safely released the animal back into the wild.  He used plastic sheeting to keep from being sprayed through the live trap, but told us that the skunk never sprayed and behaved well throughout the process.

This "good behavior" is a common feature of spotted skunks who scientists and the public alike have both relayed stories about how the spotted skunk is much more docile than the striped.  They are hesitant to spray or bite and thus we hope people will think twice about using lethal means to deal with spotted skunks in their backyard or pantry.  They are beautiful and rarely seen critters, and we urgently need more information about the species, so please keep the sightings coming!