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Skunk in the chicken coop all night and he's still in there!

 
Matu Collins
Posts: 1969
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
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I've got eight of the hens, the roo and the remaining guinea hen in the fenced in pool yard. That leaves two hens in the run with the gate open and one skunk buried in the straw of the coop #deeplittermethodproblems

A promising prospective wwoofer is coming with her slightly less promising dog in about an hour. What strategies can I use to get the skunk out without it spraying?

 
R Scott
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PATIENCE!!!

Don't push hard.

Make sure you are wearing old clothes and glasses (goggles if you have them) just to be safe.
 
John Elliott
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Predator noises opposite the entrance. How good is your coyote imitation?
 
Matu Collins
Posts: 1969
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
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bee books chicken forest garden fungi trees
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I know where it lives and I know how it gets in and out of the run. I've been tolerating it because since it's been around the raccoon hasn't been hanging out. I guess I shouldn't have let it get so comfortable...

The other thing is that yesterday when I went to get eggs someone was sitting on the nest so I left it for later and so there are a bunch of eggs in there. Good reason to hang out for a hungry skunk. I've got to go drag the old chicken tractor into the pool yard for the ladies to lay in...
 
Craig Dobbelyu
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Got a battery powered radio? Put on one of those annoying talk radio assholes real LOUD! and chuck it in the coop. You know the ones I mean. The ones that yell at the audience and say condescending things for hours on end. Yeah... one of those guys!

That's the only thing I know of that stinks bad enough to make a skunk leave a cozy home with a continental breakfast.

OR... A really long stick.


Probably worth getting the tomato juice out before hand too. Just in case

Best wishes





 
Rebecca Norman
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This made me laugh out loud.

Very rarely I've explained skunks to someone in India for some reason, like if it comes up in an American movie or something. And it sounds so preposterous, I can hear myself sound like I'm totally lying.

Good luck!!
 
Judith Browning
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At another home we had a skunk move onto our back porch where we fed the cat. We waited until it went out at night and then took down the cat ramp and quit feeding the cat there...made it inaccessable and uninviting. I don't know how you would do that with a chicken house though except by shutting up the birds when the skunk is out for the night...using a different schedule than the skunk. good luck, there!
 
Matu Collins
Posts: 1969
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
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Phew, the skunk left. He ate all the eggs but one. I kept going and thumping the side of the coop where he was and eventually he gave up on his day's nap.

We shut the poultry in at night but didn't get there in time last night I guess! I guess I need to be sure to get the eggs before dusk and shut the coop before the skunk gets up for the night.
 
Joe Portale
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Well, you could do what my wife did when we had one in the shed. She named it, fed it and eventually had the darn thing following her around like a dog. It even let her pet its head.
 
Ken Peavey
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DO NOT, under any circumstances whatsoever, at any time, or at any location, even if it seems like a good idea...spray the little feller with a garden hose in an attempt to drive him out.
Trust me on this. I know what I'm talking about.
 
Craig Dobbelyu
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When I was young I remember waking one night to a a very distinct series of sounds. I heard a Loud THUMP followed by the words "Great... Just Fucking Great!". After a minute I heard somebody using the snow shovel on the porch while swearing a bit. THEN I smelled skunk. Like enormous amounts of skunk stink. I was woken up a few times by the smell throughout the rest of the night. It was terrible.

When I got up in the morning I could still smell the skunk. Apparently a skunk had been investigating the porch area when my dad got home from working late. According to him, the skunk refused to move out of the way of the stairs to the house. He waited for a bit but the skunk wouldn't leave. In an attempt to encourage it from a safe distance, he took off his work boot and threw it in the skunks direction. AND killed it. Just flat out -lucky shot- killed it. The skunk let it's skunk juice out all over the porch and the boot. Using the snow shovel to remove the skunk from the porch was the best he could do. Everything stunk for quite a while.
Back then it was assumed that any creature that didn't immediately run when it saw a human must have been rabid. Who knows... probably just a case of a stupid skunk at the wrong place at the wrong time in a era of "rabies madness".

So...

Don't throw anything at a skunk if it's in a place you don't want to stink for a week or so.

Be aware... Rabies is still a thing and worth thinking about when your dealing with livestock.

 
John Polk
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I guess I need to be sure to get the eggs before dusk and shut the coop before the skunk gets up for the night.

Not only get the eggs, but close the doors then.
Contrary to popular opinion, in nature, skunks are not nocturnal (though they may become nocturnal around populated areas). They are crepuscular, meaning that they forage at dawn & dusk. You do not want to lock him in there all night, as once dawn begins to break, he will not want to leave until dusk, when he will once again begin to feel safe.

 
Gwen Dell'Anno
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Wow. Someone else knows the meaning (and proper use) of the word crepuscular. I'm impressed.....

 
Jeff Thorpe
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Location: Underhill, Vermont
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We had a similar experience last year. There were two skunks coming around the chicken coop (we never locked the door up at night). They would eat a few eggs, but leave the chickens alone. One afternoon I went in to get the eggs and found one asleep in a nesting box. Banging loudly on a metal trashcan wouldn't even wake him up. I shot him and of course stunk the coop up for months. A few days later I had to shoot his mate, too. I should have let them be - turns out they were providing a service. In exchange for a few eggs, they would mark the coop area and keep other predators away - we never had any predator problems while the skunks were around, but within a week or two of eliminating them, a possum found its way in and gnawed on the ass ends of three ducks.

In hindsight I should have just gotten the eggs earlier in the day and paid the protection 'fee' (left a few for the skunks).

 
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