July 23, 2021
What Attracts Skunks To Your Yard At Night?
Keeping skunks away from your yard and home may feel like a daunting task. Thus, you need to figure out the things that could be attracting them to your yard at night in the first place.
Some of the things that can draw skunks to your property include food sources in your birdseed or feeder and garbage. In addition, these animals feed on earthworms, grubs, and other larvae that they may easily find in your yard’s soil during nightime. Also, they are always looking for an opportunity to dig under porches and crawl spaces.
Read on to learn more about skunk infestation and how to keep them from your yard.
Will Skunks Dig Holes In Your Yard At Night?
You are most likely spending a lot of time trying to make your yard look attractive. So it can be disappointing when you wake up and see unsightly holes in it. If you’ve experienced this, you might be wondering what’s digging your lawn.
Well, skunks are one of those wild animals that can dig holes in the yard at night.
Typically, these holes are shallow and have loosened soil. Skunks mainly dig in the ground to look for food or shelter. If you see huge grass chunks that look like they’ve been pulled from the dirt, it could be as a result of skunks eating grubs found underneath the ground.
These animals pull the grass to try and access the grubs that are on the dirt’s top layer. If there are many skunks in your yard, they could tear a huge portion over a single night to access grubs and other insects in the ground.
However, note that digging isn’t the only issue these animals cause. They can also damage your plants as they burrow looking for food. Plus, skunks can spray pets or people in the yard, causing a huge mess. Again, they might be carrying diseases, which could spread to the house occupants.
What Are Skunks Eating In Your Lawn?
Skunks dig the ground to feed on larvae of hornworms, cutworms, Japanese beetles, and other insects in the crops.
But, apart from insects, they also eat small games grasses, grains, leaves, garbage, and any fruit that they can reach.
Also, they can eat sweet corn but only the lower ears. So planting tall corn varieties could control this problem.
What Does It Look Like When A Skunk Digs In The Yard?
In fact, skunks are not the only animals that dig holes in the yard. Raccoons and rabbits are culprits too. So you need to identify the animal that’s doing the damage first before thinking of a prevention measure.
Skunks dig two holes, small holes they use to find food, and burrows they sleep and nest in. It’s usually advisable that you wait for a wildlife removal professional to tell you about the animal on your property rather than risking getting too close to the animal as it can defend itself.
But, there are some ways you can tell whether or not it’s a skunk’s burrow.
One is the size and location. Skunks will have a burrow entrance of about 8 inches wide and it’ll be so deep that you may not be able to see the nest.
Also, these animals mostly dig their holes under a sound and protective object. So you’ll mostly see holes on a large rock or fallen log which could be an outdoor structure like patio, deck, etc. in your yard.
Besides, look for the hair on the entrance. Skunks leave only a few hairs compared to raccoons.
What Does Skunk Lawn Damage Look Like?
Skunks have a stronger sense of smell than humans. They usually walk on the lawn with their noses close to the ground. Once they smell some grubs, they tear up that lawn apart and pull chunks of turf to search for food.
If you see small circular holes about 3 to 5 inches with loosened soil, you might be having a skunk problem.
How Do You Fix A Skunk Damaged Lawn?
In general, it can be hard to push back the pulled turf. And the animals might come back to check whether they exhausted the grubs.
However, you can try smoothing the destroyed area and overseed it. Additionally, make sure that you water the area as it can help the grass to regrow. You can also try to apply insecticide to the damaged areas, although this isn’t a quick-fix method.
How To Keep Skunks From Digging Up Your Lawn And Out Of Your Yard At Night?
The first thing is to make sure that you have a skunk problem. And this you can tell from the unpleasant smell that skunks release. Then use these tips:
Buy Sensor Lights
Skunks can’t stand bright lights as they are nocturnal. Therefore, installing a motion sensor light can help keep them away from your garden. This device startles most animals, and it is effective.
However, note that this isn’t a long-term solution. Eventually, skunks will realize that these lights cannot do anything.
Invest In A Scarecrow
Skunks fear people. So they’ll likely be terrified by a mechanical scarecrow. There are different scarecrows to choose from, including those that look like people or predators such as owls or wolves.
Use Household Scents
Skunks do not like strong scents like those of citrus, soap, or paprika. Spread them around your yard to keep this wildlife away. You can also try stronger odors like detergents and the smell of mothballs.
Spray Predator Urine
Dog or coyote urine can help keep skunks from your lawn. You can spray it around your yard’s perimeter or purchase flakes dipped in coyote urine at the garden store.
Compost With Caution
Composting is good for the environment but it can attract skunks and other wild animals. So avoid putting fish, meat, or other tempting sources in the compost bin. Also, ensure that your garbage bins are properly sealed.
Remove Grubs From Grass
Skunks dig in yards trying to look for food. Since most yards have grubs, it’s no wonder many have skunks visiting them. Apply nematodes that eat grubs on your lawn. You can buy them from garden stores and apply during early spring or late summer.
However, if you need the help of an expert, call Westchester Wildlife today! We will effectively, safely, and humanely trap and remove nuisance skunks from your yard where they are not wanted!