Live-catch box-type traps (24″ x 8″ x 7″ and 32″ x 12″ x 10″ or similar) constructed of heavy- gauge plastic or sleaved wire cage traps offer the best method of removing skunks from beneath or around buildings. The best traps for skunks are the enclosed type traps which reduce the chances of the trapper being sprayed by the captured animal. Varment Guard technicians place such traps where the animals are entering the building or on active trails. Effective baits include fish (canned or fresh), fish-flavored cat food, frankfurters, cooked bacon and mayonnaise-based condiments. Skunks are relatively easy to trap, and if the trap containing the skunk is handled with minimum shaking and disturbance, it can be transported without incident.
If ordinary wire cage-type live-catch traps are being used, protection can be afforded by slowly draping a piece of drop cloth, sheet plastic, canvas, burlap or folded cardboard carefully over the trap prior to moving it. This will keep the skunk in the dark and it will be less apt to release its scent. If the trap is covered when set, it may help encourage skunks to enter it. The likelihood of a trapped skunk spraying while being approached and carried depends on its recent experiences with other animals and humans. Like raccoons, skunks will try to drag sod, mulch and soil through the wire mesh and into the trap with it. Therefore, unsleaved traps having open wire mesh floors should not be set on lawns, if possible, to avoid unsightly damage to the surrounding turf grass.
As with many other vertebrate pests, the best solution to skunk problems beneath buildings is to screen or block them out. Learn more about skunk exclusion on our skunk repellent and prevention page.