About a month ago, I happened to look out my dining room window and a movement caught my eye. I was on the phone at the time. I zoomed in on the movement and spied a black and white fur ball moving along low to the ground. I told my friend I had to go. I had a skunk in my yard. I quickly grabbed my mini 14 that hangs above the dining room window and loaded it. I slid open the dining room window at my end of the table. There is no screen at this end specifically for this purpose, so I can shoot out the window without worrying about removing the screen.
Mark likes to joke that he has the only wife in the country that wants to be able to see the "gut pile" from the dining room window. Rifle loaded, I took aim and fired, and missed. The skunk scooted along the ground a bit faster and went under the camper. I never did get another shot at him that day.
I told Mark about the skunk that night and told him I was worried because it was broad daylight when I saw him right in the yard and when I fired the rifle at him, he didn't spray. I was afraid it might be rabid because it was kind of odd behavior for a skunk. A few days later I had a visitor out to look at horses and we were just driving back into the yard from the mare pasture when we rounded the corner and were face to face with the skunk, coming straight towards us. I parked the pickup and ran into the house, yelling for Mark to get the rifle because the skunk was in the yard again. Mark and my brother both grabbed rifles and came out looking for the skunk. We had watched him cross the road but could not find him.
We all walked along the road searching but he must have found a hole or hidden somewhere because we could not find him. He had eluded us again.
One day last week we had scheduled the farrier to trim six horses so when Mark got home from his bus route, we headed down to the tack barn to get halters and leads so we could catch up the six horses and prepare for the farrier's visit. As we neared the tack barn, we could smell skunk. When Mark opened the door of the tack barn, the smell of skunk about knocked us off our feet. My nose was burning and my eyes were watering and I could not go in. I started to gag and thought i was going to get sick. I had to back off and get upwind. Mark cautiously searched for the skunk.
We had a momma cat and her kittens in the tack barn. The momma is quite protective of her kittens. We have seen her fight with the dogs and attack other cats when she has a litter of kittens. The skunk had gained access to the tack barn through a crack in the corner of the foundation and there must have been a battle between momma kitty and the skunk. The skunk had sprayed in the tack barn.
Now, we have a half dozen saddles in the tack barn along with all the halters and leads, grooming supplies, and a ton of feed in bags. Mark got the halters and leads and caught up the horses, I went to the house to wait for the farrier and make some phone calls. After the horses were caught Mark carried out the saddles and placed them on the fence in the wind and sun. The feed and feed buckets were also carried out. Then he came to the house to have a cup of coffee.
When he walked in the house, my eyes began to water! Mark stunk like a skunk!! I chased him back outside to the front step and told him I would bring him a change of clothes, which I did and he changed on the step. Then he grinned and asked me to bring him a cup of coffee while he hung his clothes on the line. I brought us both out a coffee and we drank it sitting out on the front step...but I still sat upwind of him.
The farrier made his visit and the horses were trimmed. Good thing we didn't need to work in the tack barn as just walking past it made your eyes water and your nose burn. We left the saddles, tack and feed out as long as possible but late that afternoon, it began to cloud up and look like rain. Mark moved the saddles into an out building behind the house and the feed and feed buckets into the calving barn.
Once again when he had finished, I couldn't stand to have him in the house. Another change of clothes was brought to him and another change was done on the front step. Mark joked that he was beginning to expect the traffic passing on the highway to start throwing dollar bills at him. Another set of clothes were hung on the clothes line.
After a couple of days we finally figured out that the feed sacks and feed buckets must have been in the direct line of fire. Each time you would go down to feed, you smelled as if you had been living with that skunk! We threw the feed buckets outside and found some new ones.
The next time we went to town we picked up some live traps. We had the other kind but we didn't want to catch our dogs, cats or numerous other animals, we didn't have a problem with but this skunk had to go! Along with the traps we also picked up a couple of cans of cat food. We got home and set up five traps around the farm yard.
The next morning we were up at daylight and we started running our "trapline". In the first trap we had a less-than-happy, growling, snarling, spitting, hissing cat. The other four were empty. The next day we had nothing in any of the traps, and on the third day, another unhappy cat. I was beginning to think this was not going to work but Mark had faith and on the fourth morning...SCORE! We caught that stinky devil and he has been neutralized. However, the stink, the memories and the laughter will last for years to come.

Mark and Shellie Pacovsky
Bainville, MT
PH. 406-769-2971
Cell 406-769-7971
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Last Updated: August 06, 2014