Animal Proofing Your Deck: Preventing Skunks and Other Wildlife
Animal Proofing Your Deck: Preventing Skunks and Other Wildlife

Animal Proofing Your Deck: Preventing Skunks and Other Wildlife

Skunks can be a nuisance when they decide to make your deck their home. Not only can they cause damage to your property, but they also emit a strong odor that can be difficult to get rid of. To avoid these issues, it’s important to take steps to animal proof your deck and prevent skunks from setting up residence. In this article, we will discuss some effective methods for wildlife exclusion and keeping skunks away from your deck.

1. Seal Off Access Points

The first step in animal proofing your deck is to identify and seal off any access points that skunks or other wildlife may be using. Inspect the area thoroughly and look for any gaps, holes, or openings that could serve as entry points. Common areas to check include gaps between deck boards, openings around support posts, and spaces under the deck.

Use a sealant or caulk to fill in any gaps or cracks you find. For larger openings, consider using hardware cloth or wire mesh to create a barrier. Make sure to secure the mesh tightly to prevent animals from squeezing through.

2. Install a Skirting

Adding a skirting around the base of your deck can be an effective way to prevent skunks from getting underneath. Use materials such as lattice or solid panels to create a barrier that extends from the ground to the bottom of the deck. This will make it difficult for skunks to access the space beneath the deck.

Ensure that the skirting is securely attached to the deck and that there are no gaps or openings that animals can squeeze through. Regularly inspect the skirting for any signs of damage or wear and repair as necessary.

3. Remove Attractants

Skunks are attracted to areas that provide food and shelter. To discourage them from visiting your deck, remove any potential attractants. Keep your deck area clean and free of food debris, garbage, and pet food. Secure your trash cans with tight-fitting lids to prevent skunks from scavenging through them.

Additionally, consider removing any vegetation or brush that may provide cover for skunks. Trim back overgrown plants and bushes to eliminate hiding spots.

4. Use Deterrents

There are several natural deterrents that you can use to discourage skunks from coming near your deck. One effective method is to sprinkle cayenne pepper or a commercial animal repellent around the perimeter of your deck. Skunks have a sensitive sense of smell, and these strong scents can help deter them.

You can also try using motion-activated sprinklers or lights to startle skunks and make them think twice about approaching your deck. These devices can be set up to detect movement and automatically activate, scaring away any unwanted visitors.

5. Seek Professional Help

If you have tried the above methods and are still experiencing issues with skunks on your deck, it may be time to seek professional help. Wildlife exclusion experts have the knowledge and experience to effectively animal proof your deck and prevent further infestations. They can assess your situation, identify any weaknesses, and provide tailored solutions to keep skunks and other wildlife at bay.

Remember, it’s important to take action as soon as you notice signs of skunks or other wildlife on your deck. The longer they are allowed to stay, the more damage they can cause. By following these tips and implementing effective animal proofing measures, you can enjoy your deck without the worry of skunks and their strong odor.