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#6260212 - 06/14/18 10:55 PM a couple skunk questions....
pass-thru Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 2587
Loc: Va
Doing skunk jobs I either use 110/126's or small cage traps. Last fall I bought a couple of these to replace regular cages that were wearing out:

https://www.wildlifecontrolsupplies.com/animal/AAC2477.html

But it seems the skunks avoid them. First time I used them was a yard skunks were visiting at night and spraying the dogs. I ran 2 traps for over a week and caught a possum. Same bait and everything that I normally use but didn't catch the skunk. Can't be sure that it didn't move on because it was not digging under the house.

Then a week ago I set up a home where they are digging under. These people called me a few months ago with a skunk digging under there shed. I told them what I would do and how much it would cost. Did not hear back until last week. They filled in the hole under the shed. It was dug back out along with a couple holes under the house. They are gone most the summer but last week a skunk sprayed under the house. I set a cage by each crawlout under the house. The bait at the front of the cages was taken, but no commitment to the trap. I set a 126 at the crawlout by shed. Finally after several days I caught an adult female going in.

Now I am pretty much thinking these cages are useless....not sure if it is commitment issue or what, but I never hat this problem with regular cages of the same size. Anybody had good success with these metal side cages?


I have pulled the traps because my work schedule precludes daily checking for the next week. I put up stick blocking to see if there is further activity at the crawlouts. This female skunk....as an adult I presume she was bred. A quick glance at her nipples and they did not seem mature as would expect with a bred female that was nursing. Is that a good indicator? The shed was set for several days with no activity and she was caught at the only hole going in, so there is no nest with babies there. If she does have young, I presume they are not moving about or would have been near her when I checked. I can't fit up under the house. It's 170 years old and not much crawl space for a person. The home owner is much smaller than me and could see nothing when he tried to inspect. Not sure what can be done, not knowing if there is a nest or where for sure it is. Thoughts on best course of action?

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#6260233 - 06/15/18 02:43 AM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
carlswildlife Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/17/08
Posts: 71
Loc: North East Illinois
Get a couple Comstock universal traps. They have a compartment that will fit right over or next to a den site. Any animal that wants in or out of the den will be caught. No bait needed. Always remember to cover all skunk traps. They do have specific covers for the Comstock's or you can make one. I've been using Comstock's for years and my business has improved greatly.

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#6260244 - 06/15/18 04:46 AM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
DezertTrapper Offline
trapper

Registered: 08/30/17
Posts: 579
Loc: Desert Southwest-CA

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#6260255 - 06/15/18 05:25 AM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
EatenByLimestone Offline
trapper

Registered: 10/01/11
Posts: 111
Loc: Schenectady, NY
I haven't used that trap, but skunks don't seem to be picky about cages.

You may have had a skunk that was previously caught and released.

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#6260293 - 06/15/18 06:53 AM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
Jim Comstock Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/11/11
Posts: 134
Loc: New York
During Feb-Mar breeding season I will set the small 9x11x18 inch double door cages with wire triggers using a metal nose cone cover to keep them from wanting to spray. I will place 18's in trail sets in the snow and also either singles or multiples at the dens. It's not uncommon to take 3-12 at a den, while I have heard of others catching many more than that. I have a couple of lock ring double door traps that are 8x8x24 with wire triggers that work fine too. I use a metal cover on them also.

I have used repeaters a few times and have caught many as 7 at once, as have others many times, but also have experienced some refusals and digging around the trap, so I have returned to what works every time. For now my choice is to take the gamble out of the first night to catch mom 100% of the time, then deal with the kids the next day. When the female has young I will set one 18 inch double door trap to take mom first night, then set a bunch of the small swing panel cage traps, either 5 or 6 inch, in front of the den side by side to take the rest of the litter, 5 to 9 little ones are common, which will take one or two nights max. When mom is caged you can sometimes nab a bunch of little ones by hand too, which means the job will just take two days. Though the swing panel traps are small, at times they will take two.

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#6260477 - 06/15/18 01:46 PM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
WCT Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/27/13
Posts: 19
Loc: OH
My go to skunk trap is a 7x7x24 covered like the AAC traps, but I've also caught them in 5x5x18 and 12x12x30 traps so I'll start by saying that the trap isn't the problem.

Setting for skunks in a yard is not what I'd recommend anyone do. Rather, look for the choke points they may use that would allow for a double door trap (Comstock, Tomahawk, Advanced Trap, Safeguard, others) or for a crawl under where you can put a positive set. Skunks that have been previously trapped or harassed are more difficult hands down than those that have never encountered a trap before. If you're concerned about the trap, try lacing the bottom with a piece of carpet or like with groundhogs covering the wire with dirt (I don't know if the AAC traps allow the cover to be removed). When making positive sets, you can either use a trap that already has the nose cone built into it or you use a regular trap and make your own "cone". I prefer cardboard as it's cheap and easy to work with but what seems to matter the most is that you install wings for several feet (provided there is space to do so) on both sides. Although the skunks my dig a new access point at times, installing the wings has really dropped down the number of times I've had it happen.

As for what to do next, stuff paper or some sort of material in the holes and have the client monitor them. If there is still a problem the client will now shortly and you'll be getting another phone call.
_________________________
Eric Arnold
www.wctmagazine.com

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#6260600 - 06/15/18 06:11 PM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
Jim Bethell Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 1081
Loc: Woodhull, Illinois 74
X2 what Eric said.

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#6260629 - 06/15/18 07:18 PM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
Jim Comstock Offline
trapper

Registered: 02/11/11
Posts: 134
Loc: New York


This photo shows 5 baby skunks in 4 of the double door 6x6x26 panless swing panel cage traps with the trap on the right holding two. Double door traps offer the greatest versatility. Don't believe Safeguard makes a double door trap. This is a den set, which is most of what I do for skunks and chucks. You can perhaps gamble on a multi catch to do it in one night, but they could refuse. Option two is to set a double door trap for mom on day one and be guaranteed to be done in two or three days max. You could set a multipurpose day one like Carl says and then go to the small traps for the little ones.

For trail setting, sets that have always been my passion, I sometimes use foot tall sheets of aluminum in 3 foot lengths with T bars to drift fence and also for quick blockage on porches, decks and sheds.

I set baited traps as a last resort, though I will have to admit at times they have worked quite well just setting the double doors with one door closed and bait to the rear.

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#6261235 - 06/16/18 08:23 PM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
EatenByLimestone Offline
trapper

Registered: 10/01/11
Posts: 111
Loc: Schenectady, NY
When I first learned to trap, I used bait and single door traps. I bet I ate 10x the bait that ended up in the traps. I'd use a single cookie in the trap, then stomach the other 11 in the box.

Jim's traps saved me from buying new, bigger pants!

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#6275825 - 07/09/18 07:53 PM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
pass-thru Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 2587
Loc: Va
Here's the postscript on this job: after catching the skunk, and my cage traps being ignored, I block all 4 holes with newspaper. There was activity at the 2 holes through the lattice at the front of the house, where I had the cages. I set body grippers there and quickly caught a rabbit, then nothing. I blocked the holes back up with newspaper and then nothing for over a week. I blocked the holes back with brick and advised how they can be properly excluded. It's a coin toss on whether they will follow through with the proper exclusion. The 1 skunk and 1 rabbit didn't put enough sting in the purse to convince the necessity of proper repair. But it was a rabbit that turned out to be avoiding the cages. Though I feel certain a skunk made the crawl-outs and the rabbit at some point took over.

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#6276109 - 07/10/18 05:51 AM Re: a couple skunk questions.... [Re: pass-thru]
Jonesie Offline
trapper

Registered: 08/08/07
Posts: 900
Loc: Monroeville NJ
I use to use the smaller cages for skunks, but any more in the past 10 years I tend to use the bigger traps. A 9x9 or 10x10 is my idea of the perfect trap, but I use the coon 10x12 mostly because that is what I have more of. In my skunk control course I give, Phases of the skunk, I go into detail why on this. I believe that the 20% skunks will go into a bigger trap much faster. Yes 80 % will go into anything, eat anything and are easy to catch, but I am not skimming the cream here, I am after the all causing the problem. I have no pride on how to get it done, just get it done! LOL What showed me about the bigger traps, was I found when dealing with family groups that when I set a bigger trap and 3 or 4 7x7 cages, most of the time not all the time but most times, the adult female would be in the bigger trap and the smaller ones in the smaller cages around the bigger trap. Also many jobs where I get a skunk refusing to go into a smaller trap I simple place a bigger trap and most times have it the next day or next time it comes around on it's circuit.


Edited by Jonesie (07/10/18 05:57 AM)
_________________________
Ron Jones
http://www.acpwildlifepro.net/
Rednecks Pride Game Calls / Outdoor Scents
Rednecks Pride Outdoors pod cast

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