Humane or Insane?! – My Skunk Stay

November 30, 2014 by  
Filed under GG's writing

I’ve long since shown my students these photos but I’ve been horrible this school year with keeping up with my own personal blogging site.  Maybe it’s the cold weather that makes me turn to nature.  Maybe I just want to show off these pictures.  Maybe I’m just a bit crazy and okay with sharing some of that craziness.  Whatever the case,  I devote my first of this new batch of blogs to Skychi, Gronda, Buente, Oka, Cincy, Gwtine, and Bwit!  

Seven inhabitants welcomed themselves around my home this past late spring and early summer.  Most folks would not take so kindly to these guests and my neighbors really hoped I evicted them stat.

I, on the other hand, err on the patient side of life so these creatures stayed with me for their needed nesting duration before moving on to greener pastures.

Long story short, these seven black and white furballs invaded uninvitedly but exited peacefully.  My niece uniquely named them:   Skychi (Mama Skunk)  and her children Gronda, Buente, Oka, Cincy, Gwntine, and Bwit  (she wanted to be sure I spelled them correctly here).  

 

Mama with one of her young - about 2.5 mos old here

Mama with one of her young – about 2.5 mos old here

Apparently, Mama Skunk and her babies felt completely safe around my home during their residency because they did not spray once.  They were quite quiet, actually.   I refused to cage them . . . not only is that inhumane, that would guarantee a stubbornly stinky spray session.  Rather, I waited for the six darling babies to grow and leave the burrow they called home under my home.

I looked at the situation more as an unexpected summer science research project and learned a bit about these creatures:

  • Skunks are naturally docile and only spray when they feel threatened.
  • They have MAD digging skills!!!
  • Mothers take very good care of their young. Skychi took her young ones out faithfully each evening around 9:45 for a quick leg stretch.  That duration became longer as they grew (and grew quickly they did!)
  • They sleep all day.
  • They are not disturbed by noise during the day.  On some days, I’d have friends sitting next to the hole, talking but neither hide nor hair from the skunks.  They were used to certain voices, I think!
  • The little ones don’t seem to realize their spray capabilities until they leave the nest.
  • Mama Skunk keeps them nested until three months old – she arrived late April, had her babies, and left with her clan in late July.
  • Skunks hate cayenne paper and onions!
Peeking out!

Peeking out!

 

Today, all holes have been professionally inspected and re-sealed very carefully with cement; I don’t think I’ll be graced with a repeat visit nor do I want to take a chance.  (I think I just got lucky with an extremely docile group).   My neighbors now talk amusingly about my summer hosting!  No one was sprayed so everyone’s content . . . and amused!!

 

One big happy, sweet family!

One big happy, sweet family!

 

Cute faces that I couldnt cage. I just held my breath that theyd hold the spray!!

Cute faces that I couldnt cage. I just held my breath that theyd hold the spray!!

Startling sight, but no spray to my delight!

Startling sight, but no spray . . .  to my delight!

First encounter/photo shoot with Mama Skychi

First encounter/photo shoot with Mama Skychi

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Comments

One Response to “Humane or Insane?! – My Skunk Stay”
  1. Hi, you are amazing. I am so happy there are people left in this world with love, common sense, understanding and patience . You are one of the few.
    I was looking up info. About skunks, because the skunk who I came to know for two years. Has disappeared. And I came across your story.

    I met my skunk by accident . Everyday I put food out for my squirrels and they always have some left over. I was into garage and I heard, CRUNCH, CRUNCH, CRUNCH. So I quietly peeked out and there he was. Or her. Munching away on walnuts, pecans and some peanuts. I was so excited . I never saw a real skunk up close . I learned all I could learn about skunks. They will never spray you unless truly threatened. Most people don’t understand that. It takes a lot out of them to spray. Plus, you’re given fair warning with the stomping of their feet.
    I’ve learned they can’t see well. So when I would sit in my garage waiting to see him. I would stay still and make very quiet whispers so he knew I was there. He would walk up look at me and scurry around eating his breakfast. Since skunks wake up at night.:). I call it his breakfast.

    Well, I haven’t seen Him in over a week. I’m hoping maybe it was a female and she had babies. Maybe it will show up soon. I really miss him/her. Maybe it will be a mama and bring her babies to visit . If people weren’t so ignorant about wildlife. I wouldn’t have to worry so much, but they are. So I do.

    Two weeks ago I also discovered we have a big raccoon coming into yard. He scared me a little, because I didn’t see him in my yard and he hissed at me at 1:00 am while I was letting my dog out , but it’s understandable. I scared him.

    I am very thankful for people like you. Keep up the wonderful love for wildlife. Maybe they’ll be some left for the next generation.:):)
    Have a great day!
    Maryann

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