Amazing Facts about Skunks

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The size of a striped skunk is similar to that of a house cat but its body is far stouter than a regular cat. It has short legs, a bushy tail and a little head. Skunks can grow up to an average length of 21 to 27 inches.

Their body weight varies from 2.5 lbs to 10 lbs. Here are some more important facts about a striped Skunk.

  • A male skunk is normally larger than a female. The average length of their tail may range from 9 to 13 inches. It is entirely covered in a black, long and furry coat. There are two white stripes that run along its back which continues in the tail.

  • There are some skunks that have different colours while others can be completely black with sprays of white. Some species are completely white. They are given long nails on their front feet which are generally used for the purpose of digging.

  • There are three types of skunks under this family. They are the hooded skunk, hog-nosed skunk and spotted skunk. The hooded skunks look almost like the striped skunk. They have white furs running from head to tail and cover the entire body. The base of hooded skunk is black in colour.

  • The spotted skunk is much smaller than the striped one. It has extended white spots on its back, shoulders and head. The hog-nosed skunk resembles the hooded skunk. The only difference is that they have a long snout with wide nose pad.

  • Striped skunks are largely found in North America and Central Canada and even northern parts of Mexico. They are also found along the coast of Midwest and Wisconsin. It is the most seen variety of skunks.

  • The adult skunks do not go too far from the home range especially during night-time. They do not like crowded places to set up residence. They also avoid agricultural regions. In Stevens Point, they dwelt in the woods and came to the low plains at night.

  • They breed in the months from February to April. The females undergo delayed implantation for 19days after which the 2 months gestation period occurs. Finally they give birth to the off-springs in late April. They can give birth to two to ten babies at a time.

  • The babies remain deaf and blind when new born. They do not even grow hair which is why their back remains white. They weigh around 15 grams when born. They slowly open their eyes and start to move around their home at the age of 3 weeks. They remain with their mother until the autumn of next season.

  • Striped skunk can adjust in any habitat. They can be found in deserts, woods, grassy plains, wetlands and even sub-urban regions. They are even found along fertile river valleys. But they never go beyond 2 miles from the water source.

  • Skunks are omnivorous in nature and can eat a variety of plants or animals. They eat small mammals, insects, fish, fruits, berries, leaves, nuts and even dead animals.

The scientific name of a skunk comes from a Latin word which refers to ‘œpoisonous vapour,’ which they spray only on predators but never on each other. Skunks are resistant to snake’s poison and can resist ten times the venom of a snake that is required to kill an animal of its stature.

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