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They eat a varied diet of both plants and animals. Insects form the bulk of their diet, but they also eat reptiles, small mammals, birds, and vegetation.
Their breeding period begins in February or March. The young are born in early May, with average litters consisting of five offspring. Some females have two litters a year, but one litter per year is more common. The nursery is a cavity under a rock, a burrow, or a thicket of cactus or other protective vegetation. Usually the mother builds a nest of dried grasses and weed stems for the blind, helpless young. Baby skunks must remain hidden in their nest until they can see and are strong enough to follow their mother. ***Seeing a skunk in the daytime during this time is often normal as the mother is providing for her young. If the animal is healthy and searching for food please respect her distance and let her be. We must learn to co-exist safely together as our wildlife maintains a healthy ecosystem for all living things. If you see a skunk and are concerned please contact us first so we can assess the situation and provide education on next steps if any intervention is warranted.*** To learn more about RVS (rabies vector species) please review Rabies Vector Species page. Message us for any questions you may have.
Striped Skunks have a lifespan of about two years in the wild, but they have few natural enemies. Like humans, most predators avoid skunks because of the odor of their musk. When threatened or disturbed, skunks make a purring sound and often growl when attacked by humans. Prior to spraying the intruder with musk, skunks put on a defensive display by rising upon their hind feet, lurching forward, stamping both front feet, and at the same time clicking their teeth. Habitat The skunk is found in wooded or brushy areas and farmlands. They prefer taking shelter in rocky outcrops or under large boulders, but when these are unavailable, skunks choose to den in the abandoned burrows of other animals. Distribution They are distributed statewide in Texas. Reference: https://tpwd.texas.gov/huntwild/wild/species/skunk/