How to Eliminate Raccoons & Skunks From a Yard

Skunks and raccoons are pesky and potentially dangerous animals that can move into your basement, attic and yard. Wildlife like this has learned to live with and actually live off the presence of humans. They get into trashcans, live off loose dog food and can build homes in areas where they have easy access to these things. They can also be dangerous to pets and make themselves extremely unwelcome. If your property is being raided by raccoons or skunks, take some steps to get rid of them.

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Although raccoons are cute and charming, they can be pests in your yard.

Step 1

Secure your trash to take away the motivation for raccoons and skunks to come onto your property. Tie the lids on trashcans and put any pet food into secure plastic or metal containers so that no creatures can get into them. Clean up or secure any compost heaps or bird feeding areas.

Step 2

Keep your yard well lit with floodlights. Raccoons and skunks are nocturnal and will hesitate to enter any area where there are bright lights. Use motion-sensor lights if you don't want to leave the lights on all night. They will come on as soon as a skunk enters the area.

Step 3

Use the sprinkler system to scare raccoons and skunks away. Animals do not like getting wet and will avoid the area.

Step 4

Spray anti-skunk and anti-raccoon repellant around the border of your yard. Sprays are made up of capsaicin (an ingredient in cayenne peppers) and commercial repellents.

Step 5

Build a barrier around your yard. Skunks do not jump or climb; if you have only a skunk problem, this barrier does not have to be tall. If your problem includes raccoons, which can climb, this barrier needs to be around five feet tall.

Step 6

Seal any holes into your attic or basement. Make sure windows are locked and secure. Fill in any holes or areas under your house, porch or patio that might invite skunk or raccoon habitation.

Step 7

Research whether skunk or raccoon trapping is legal in your area. Bait traps with fish, beef or fruit to attract the animals, and put them where you've seen skunks and raccoons. If you catch animals, cover the traps with blankets and take them out of town to release the animals humanely.