The thing that skunks are mostly associated with is the noxious spray that they use when they are trying to defend themselves. Digging holes is the other menace that you may not know about skunks. They can cause a lot of destruction because they love digging all over. There can be different kinds of holes all over the yard and in your lawn. They dig to find food as well as for the purposes of building their dens. Skunks are omnivorous and their diet is quite varied. They can feed on garbage, fish, eggs, amphibians and even mice. Insects are, however, the food that they prefer.
During late summer as well as the early fall months, skunks are out looking for worms, beetle larvae and even grubs to feast on them. At such times, skunks will usually dig up holes all over. These holes are usually around 1-3 inches in diameter and they are cone shaped. When you find such holes in your lawn, you are most probably dealing with a skunk problem and you should start looking for ways to deal with it.
Problems posed by the holes
The front claws of skunks are very sharp, and this is what they use for digging up the holes. In the suburban and urban areas, skunks can burrow practically anywhere, and this includes under concrete slabs, porches, decks and other residential structures. This leads to a lot of structural damage as time progresses. Skunks can also lead to damage in golf courses, gardens, and even lawns as they dig all over for grubs found within the soil.
Skunks are actually nocturnal, so you may never catch them digging in your lawn in broad daylight. They are mild mannered and not aggressive. If skunks visit your garden, they may not touch the plants unless they are digging or if the crop is very close to the ground.
Skunks can actually be a farmer’s friend because they feed on the larvae of insects such as hornworms, Japanese beetles and cutworms among other insects that destroy plants. This is one of the important roles of the skunks in our ecosystem.
Go back to the How to Get Rid of Skunks page or email us if you have any other questions about Do skunks dig in lawns looking for food?
We are the Pest Education Network, a non-profit organization that focuses on wildlife and pest removal education. Our approach utilizes Integrated Pest Management, a strategy advocating prevention and humane methods.