Skunks belong to the Mustelidae family, with other
otters and polecats. Skunks are closely related to badgers,
otters and weasels. There are 13 species of skunks.
Skunks are found in North America in the woods, grassland
desert and even urban areas. A skunk’s body measures
11-19.3 inches long and their tail can be 6.3-17 inches.
Skunks defend themselves from enemies by squirting
them with a strong-smelling liquid. The liquid is secreted
from glands under the skunks tail. The stench is often
so bad the squirted victim may have difficulty breathing.
The liquid burns the attackers skin, stings their eyes,
and can temporarily blind a predator. Skunks can spray
from ten feet away.
Skunks will often warn their enemies before they spray,
sometimes they will hold their tail straight up, or
they will make hissing sounds and stamp the ground with
their front paws.
Skunks are omnivores, they eat fruit, worms, insects,
fish, snakes, birds, and small animals.
The Horned Owl is one of the only animals not put off
by the skunk’s smell.
Skunks give birth in a den or burrow usually in April
or May. Litters may be as many as nine skunk babies.
Skunks babies are born blind and completely helpless.
At one month of age the black and white fur is visible,
and two weeks later they are able to spray.
Skunks live up to 6 years.
About the Author
Jacob Maddox manages content for Wildlife Animals http://www.wildlife-animals.com
an educational wildlife and animal website. Jacob also
guest writes for Dog Pound http://www.dog-pound.net