Last Tuesday I discovered a skunk in my culvert trying to feast on my
recycling. It walked funny and grumbling - no doubt rabies or other
I backed away and called Animal Control - who may or may not have shown up.
It was raining quite hard all week.
Well, this AM (Sunday) I had a nice day and time, so I did I quick garden
walk. About 25 feet from the original sighting, there is a very dead
(partially skeletonized) skunk. Due to the oddness of the white stripe
(this one was more white than black, especially on the tail), I'm sure it's
the same animal.
So, do I let nature finish it's work - there are beetles and flies aplenty.
This is a flower garden and an area I can avoid working in for a few weeks.
Or do I grab the shovel and heft it to the woods or compost heap.
Depends on the property size and proximity of neighbors. Animals die
on my property all the time, either from natural causes or
preditors. First clue I get is usually the appearance of turkey
vultures circling, they make very swift work of cleaning up dead
flesh. But sometimes I'll come across a dead carcass in one of my
mowed or meadow areas, I usually smell it before sighting. Then I'll
find a hunk of tree limb, hold my breath, and shove it as far into the
woods as is feasible. Often in spring right after the snow melts I'll
find partially skeletonized deer, possums, hedgehogs, wild turkeys,
etc. Anyone tells me to grab a shovel and dig a grave in the woods
has never attempted to dig a hole in the woods, just not possible
unless one uses a back hoe, an excavator, or some such... there's no
way any human being is going to get a shovel into a forest floor more
than an inch or two, the tree roots, plus rocks make that kind of
ground into an impenetrable matrix, you really need a machine, a
pretty hefty machine, and even then around here there's a good chance
that just below the surface there'll be boulders the size of
If someone lives on a smallish property, say a housing development
with neighbors within shouting distance, then it behooves to have the
authorities retrieve and dispose of the corpse... in a populated area
especially, unless it's obviously road kill, there's a need to know
what killed that animal. And in any event do not handle or let
domestic animals near.
Do not do it yourself. Let animal control come out. If you rupture
the stink thing you will regret it forever. It's their job to do
things like this. Especially if rabies are involved. Do not do it
On 7/27/08 11:48 AM, in article firstname.lastname@example.org,
Ah - but I don't know if animal control will come remove a dead animal that
is not in the street.
Well, since I have to head to work and the rains are returning, I'll let it
be until tomorrow.....
I don't have specific answers to your problem but you may want to look at
I did read one caution about not waiting until the dead skunk starts to
swell-up to remove it. I doesn't get any better.
Call me and my offspring weird or whatever you like, but sons and I,
uh, enjoy skunk scent (not dead skunk). Sometimes it faintly wafts
over the garden (see...actual garden reference) and we are in olfactory
However, Stan, the resident rodent exterminator, had a minor dustup
with one last year and that was not fun. Giving a cat a bath is not an
experience I wish to repeat.
Charlie, in a skunky state of mind...
Yosemite Sam: "All right, all you skunks clear out of here!"
[Everyone leaves the saloon; the last one out is an actual skunk]
Skunk: "My, weren't there a lot of skunks in there? "
On 7/27/08 1:52 PM, in article email@example.com,
"Charlie" <Charlie> wrote:
I remember my grandmother's dog loved to roll in dead skunk. I don't mind
the odd whiff; but as a long term "perfume", no thanks. We did lots of
tomato juice baths.
The video of the cat bath would have been something to see.
If it was me... I would dig a hole close by, at least a foot
deep (critters dig up shallow graves) and big enough in
diameter that the corpse fits in easily. Carefully slip
shovel underneath corpse, slide/carry over and place in
hole. Cover with 6 inches or so and tamp down, add several
more inches and tamp. Finish covering the hole.
If you leave it as is another critter will tear into it,
dog, opossum, skunk... and it will stink again, if it
One was hit in the road maybe 3/4 mile west of us late last
winter. The corpse laid in the ditch, never got buried. Just
recently some scavenger found it again and stirred it up. It
is still pretty potent smelling.
On Mon, 28 Jul 2008 02:47:36 -0400, Cheryl Isaak
If you don't mind the skunk smell (possibly) re-appearing go
ahead. The one I mentioned above, something found it, tore
into what was left and the skunk smell was pretty potent. I
was a bit surprised the scent/smell had a whole lot of punch
yet after ~5 months.
I don't find the odor particularly offensive, but I wouldn't
want to wear it :)
I these parts it is considered good manners to dispose of corpses on your land
for the sake of the amenity of neighbours. Now a decomposing skunk is not
going to generate as much perfume as a cow or a horse but I am guessing your
neighbours are much closer than mine so they may care.
The other issue is whether local scavengers (dogs mainly) are likely to visit
you or their owners having had a little necrophilliac snack. Such can be
tracked at a distance without radar and bathing them can require breathing
On 7/27/08 11:25 PM, in article g6je84$t5l$ firstname.lastname@example.org, "David Hare-Scott"
I'm going to make a call to Animal Control in the AM. Not much a corpse left
as of Sunday AM. Rabid skunks aren't uncommon, but the way this one favored
a leg, I wondered if it had a glancing blow from car and was on borrowed
time even if it wasn't rabid. Lots of coyotes and owls about here despite
the encroaching civilization.
With all the rain, decomposition was well advanced when I found it. I could
clearly see skull and ribs.
this sure brightened my day reading all the responses from everyone
about this, humor, serious solutions, great feedback. showed me that
the newsgroup is still alive and thriving.........I miss just sitting
and reading what I want to instead of having to watch the clock and
wonder when my time at the library will be over. they're changing the
hours August 4th. earlier times (8 a.m. to 8 pm M & Th.) and 9 a.m. to
5 Tu, We & Fr. closed Sat and Sun, which means no more
Saturday.....comics and wreck gardening will have to be five days a
week. BTW, INCREDIBLE skunk wash solution that absolutely 100% works.
because I tried it not once, but several times when Sugar and Smeagol
were skunked not once, but several times in a course of a few weeks
and then again this year before we were evicted from Faerie
2# box of baking soda (yes, some grocery stores have a 2 pound box,
mine does, it's called Food City) ten bottles of hydrogen peroxide
gotten at Dollar Store, Dollar General store, anywhere that it's
cheap, like 25c a bottle or under $1.00. at least two cups of baking
soda and all the bottles of peroxide into a bowl, then mix it up and
sponge it on the skunked fur. sadly it doesn't work when the poor
mutt has gotten a full facial spray like Sugar did.....where it
IMMEDIATELY worked.........took the odor away INSTANTLY, her eyes, her
poor ears and nose and mouth exuded skunk odor for many, many days,
and you can't rinse eyes, ears (deep inside) nose or mouths with this
solution. it's safe though. works like a charm and 1000 times better
than the Wives tale solution of tomato juice baths. it apparently
doesn't work regardless of the idea that the Vitamin C is what makes
it work......the peroxide and soda solution works every time and is
cheaper than the overpriced tiny bottle of "Skunk OFF" that you can
get at the Vet's.............which is why I learned of this. my Vet's
secreteary knew I was fund short and told me the solution. I used it
again this year when Sugar got it again, and it worked like a charm.
now I keep peroxide bottles and a 2 pound box of baking soda tucked
away for just that reason. even if I do live in the city
maddie gardening in the heat and humidity of eastern Tennessee zone
7b, Sunset zone 36? (now I'll have to look that one up too) harvesting
beans, tomato's, cow horn peppers, naturtiums and lots of love and
memories to share with you soon surrounded by the Cherokee National
Forest and Appalachian mountains in the green bowl
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