Raccoon, squirrel or opossum damage?


I will try after having breakfast first.


My sister covered the cage with a blanket and took it for a ride to public land. She moved slow and gentle so she wouldn’t scare the skunk.


I just don’t know about this Clark. I just have an issue making my problem (skunk, or any other varmint) to become someone else’s problem. I mean, I wouldn’t want them to do that to me - I mean, release a varmint in my area so it finds my yard. :thinking:
‘Public land’ is adjacent to someone’s property where I live.


Can you call the Humane Society to see if they can take it or let it goes near a river in your area.



We have several pieces of land set aside for conservation land and many state parks here. My choices are either kill this skunk or move it to a state park. I would like to give it a chance.

I used a large tarp to cover the cage. Lifting the cage was a bit awkward as I was worried that this skunk may have seen my feet. So, I resorted to dragging the cage from back yard to my front yard and into a trunk of my car.

I was careful to keep the tarp covered the cage fully when I lifted a cage from the trunk of my car to the ground and let it go. I was not that gentle. The whole process, this skunk never once sprayed. It was in the dark ( literally and figuratively.)

The bad news is, this was a younger skunk. The old one with grayish fur is still around.

Also. Just this morning alone, I saw another young groundhog, several squirrels, and chipmunks. Oh, well.


my neihbor catches them and coons then drowns them in his pond. no smell.


It’s different in this area because we do not have animal over populations in public land.


Have the skunks gone into your trap baited only with MM’s.

I still think your problem would be less time consuming if you devised a way to require more climbing abilities than in the skunks repertoire to reach the trap. Coons go where skunks cannot tread.


I hear you but my fruit trees are inside my temporary fence ( bird netting from ground to avout 5 ft high, all around the parameter). No other trees outside that are on level ground that I could lean my trap against.

Yes, last week, a skunk got into my marshmellows only as baits. Last night, it’s marshmellows and peaches so I deserved a skunk.

I also found a huge hole on my netting in one area. I suspected a raccoon made that hole as it was very large.


I still don’t see the efficacy of saving a nuisance to potentially become a problem for someone else. To me, it is like throwing your garbage in your neighbor’s yard - which I know you would never do. The person who encounters this nuisance is still your neighbor, even though you haven’t met them.
Sorry for the mini rant. I just don’t get it, I guess.


You can rant. I don’t mind. I happen to have a different look about life.


set it up on a cheap table with a coon ramp


You sure are creative.


Can’t you just put up a cage around your trees? I have a big fat ground hog who eats everything in the yard. I caged my fruit trees and the problem solved. Can ground hogs climb up a wire fence? I wonder if it’s only a matter of time until he finds his way inside of the cage.
I don’t like how the branches get all squished together inside the cage. But it’s either this or no growing fruit.


They are diggers, so if there is a chance to dig under a fence, wall or cage, they Will. They were my nemisis in Maine! Like Caddy Shack!!!


It was gophers that Murray’s character obsessed on, which I did when I first started pulling my living from the soil in S. CA. They made growing fruit trees extremely challenging because they ate the roots and killed trees- but nothing was worse than the ground squirrels there.

Ground Hogs are diggers but I haven’t seen them dig into gardens in my region, although I believe I’ve heard reports of it, so I don’t doubt that they can and sometimes do. However, I see their work all over as my plutocratic employers now often have kitchen gardens and groundhogs or woodchucks are certainly adequate climbers, known also to climb fruit trees. Non-electric fences with wood posts are pretty easy for them

One of my clients has witnessed a woodchuck making a vertical leap from stationary position of 4’ to reach the bottom branch of a peach tree loaded with ripe fruit (to avoid a baffle). Of course, this may have been an olympic athlete among woodchucks.

As I mentioned, I actually had a woodchuck with a burrow under a peach tree one season, and all he did was eat a couple drops a day, although the tree had no baffle. However, at some point, he tore the hell out of the bark of the tree so I had to eliminate him. They sometimes seem to do that as a territorial thing.

Clark is right about one thing. If you don’t use exclusion, you are locked in a permanent war in which you will occasionally take losses. I’ve chosen war, but if all I had was a tidy orchard and veg garden, I would opt for exclusion every time. My terrain and scale make that option untenable.


I’ve found peace is a good solution until it’s not. When I was a kid I had a family of raccoons killing my chickens so in all I killed 6 of them over the spread of 1 week. The mother was the first and the worst because she kept me up for days without sleep to smart and trap shy to fall for any of my attempts at an easy solution. Finally she came during a rain storm and after a long and close fight with a shotgun I killed her. The second she saw me that night she jumped for me and I shot her and she came again and I shot her again all in near pitch black conditions. I caught her mate the next night in a trap meant for her, her two adult children the next night, the small children the next day. By the time I killed that family of raccoons I had more respect for them than I can describe. It stuck in my mind and that was the last time I ever resorted to traps and a 12 gauge because I realized some things that night about them. In a few days a new family took over the territory that belonged to the old family. I’d accomplished nothing at all. After that I learned to fence them out and saved their lives. By the way many people just quit raising corn or chickens or fruit because their story does not end in a dead family of raccoons or two or 12. The old timers frequently ran out of corn before they ran out of coons and some listened to me and ate corn, some killed until they quit coming but either way people need to make up their own decisions. Eventually everyone will face a smart old creek or river coon like the one I did who has seen a hundred traps and after they got out of one they will never fall for another. That is the type of coon who strips a tree of fruit in one night.


I have a friend who is a lawn mower mechanic in the summer and a trapper in the winter and he makes his living like that every year and has for many years. He talked about the raccoons in my area as being legendary for their trap dodging ability. I’ve caught the young coons easily when I was younger but typically the 30-40 pound mother raccoon or dad are the problem. My friend prefers not to trap in my area at all because his traps stay empty besides skunks and possums. The coons have been trapped by every farmer around and they are still alive. Once the big coons see family members caught in a trap or another animal eg. Skunk they learn from it. The farmers accidentally trained the raccoons to be trap shy and smart. Those coons won’t fall for traps. You can set 6 traps together and hope they back into one flipping your other but chances are it won’t work at all. There is always a way to catch something but remember naive city raccoons eating from trash cans are not the same as a raccoon that grew up on the creek with everything trying to eat or trap it it’s entire life. My friend likes to trap in areas where the coons have not seen traps. We have several trappers in my area.


Probably the reason they are savvy is because fur trappers still exist in your region. They are long gone from my 50 minute from NYC locale. Here their populations are only controlled by disease and they haven’t figured the way out of that trap. A trap shy coon can’t transfer the knowledge and since not that many people trap them around me I’ve managed to trap them out for about 28 years and it isn’t a big deal now that I’m used to it. Take out the garbage. Shoot the coon in the brain. Go pick some fruit.

Just another day, no chore greater than the next. Your problem is you never got used to killing vermin. I get some satisfaction knowing that I’m creating a little balance in my domain and reducing the danger of rabid coons in the process, which are a problem in my area. Like I said before, coon populations around man are not natural.


The raccoons starting to terrorize my Shenandoah pawpaws due to the fragrance. I beat them to the punch with these rippened pawpaws.