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Home » Blog » Skunk Trap Bait: How to Choose the Best Bait for Your Skunk Trap

Skunk Trap Bait: How to Choose the Best Bait for Your Skunk Trap

Skunk Trap Bait How to Choose the Best Bait for Your Skunk Trap

Skunks are easy to spot because they have black and white stripes on their bodies and can spray a strong, unpleasant smell to protect themselves. Even though these animals might seem cute and safe, they can do a lot of damage to property and put people and pets in danger. Skunks like garbage cans, gardens, and pet food because they have food inside them. This makes them a common problem for people who live in their own homes.

One effective way to trap skunks is by using bait. Skunk trap bait is designed to lure the animal into a trap so it can be safely removed from the property. One kind of bait that can be used is canned fish. Other kinds are cat food and peanut butter. But to make sure you catch fish, you need to use the right kind of bait and put it in the right place.

We will talk about the different kinds of skunk trap bait and give you tips on how to use them correctly in this article. We will also discuss the importance of humane trapping methods and how to safely release skunks back into the wild. People who own property can safely and responsibly control skunk populations on their land by following these tips.

Understanding Skunk Behavior

skunk trap bait

Skunks are nocturnal animals that are mostly active during the night. They are known for their distinctive black and white stripes and their ability to spray a foul-smelling liquid when threatened. Understanding skunk behavior can help in trapping them effectively.

Skunk Diet and Feeding Habits

Skunks are omnivores and their diet includes insects, small mammals, fruits, and vegetables. They are known to eat grubs, which you can find in gardens and lawns. They also eat berries, nuts, and other plant matter. Skunks will eat almost anything they can find when they get the chance.

When trapping skunks, it is important to use bait that appeals to their natural feeding habits. The best skunk bait is a combination of foods that skunks typically eat, such as peanut butter, canned fish, and cat food. These foods have a strong odor that can attract skunks from a distance.

Skunk Activity Patterns

Skunks are mostly active during the night and are known to be slow-moving animals. They are not aggressive and will usually try to avoid confrontation. Skunks are territorial animals and will mark their territory with their scent. They are also known to den in burrows or other sheltered areas.

If you want to catch a skunk, you should put the trap somewhere that skunks are known to be. This can be near their den or in an area where they have been seen feeding. It is also important to set the trap at the right time, which is usually during the night when skunks are most active.

In conclusion, understanding skunk behavior is important when trying to trap them effectively. By using the best skunk bait and placing the trap in the right location, it is possible to trap skunks without causing harm to them or yourself.

Selecting the Right Bait

best skunk bait

When it comes to trapping skunks, selecting the right bait can make all the difference. Here are some tips on choosing the most effective skunk bait options.

When setting up a skunk trap DIY project, choosing the right bait is crucial for success while avoiding unintended captures. The best skunk bait that won't attract cats includes options like marshmallows, which are highly effective in luring skunks without appealing to feline curiosity. Using marshmallow skunk bait ensures that your trap targets skunks specifically, making your trapping efforts more efficient and humane.

Effective Skunk Bait Options

Skunks are known for their love of insects, so insect-based baits like mealworms and crickets can be highly effective. Sardines and canned fish are also popular options, as are eggs and peanut butter. However, it is important to note that skunks have a highly sensitive sense of smell, so it is important to use fresh bait and change it frequently.

For those looking to avoid attracting cats, it is important to steer clear of fish-based baits, as cats are attracted to the scent of fish. Instead, opt for insect-based baits or those with a strong odor, like garlic or onion.

Bait That Minimizes Non-Target Captures

While skunk trapping is often necessary, it is important to minimize the capture of non-target animals. Marshmallows can be an effective bait option that minimizes non-target captures. They are not attractive to most other animals and are easy to place in the trap.

It is important to note that skunks are omnivorous and will eat a variety of foods, so there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to selecting the right bait. Experimenting with different bait options and monitoring the trap is key to finding the most effective bait for your specific situation.

In conclusion, selecting the right bait is crucial when it comes to trapping skunks. By using fresh, effective bait options and taking steps to minimize non-target captures, individuals can safely and effectively remove skunks from their property.

Trap Placement and Set-Up

how to trap a skunk with food

Choosing the Ideal Location

When setting up a skunk trap, it is crucial to choose the right location to ensure that the trap is effective. A good place for a skunk trap is somewhere that skunks are often seen, like near trash cans or in gardens.

It is important to note that skunks are nocturnal animals, so traps should be set up in the evening and checked in the morning. When selecting a location, make sure that the trap is placed on level ground and is not near any obstacles that could prevent the trap door from closing properly.

Securing and Camouflaging the Trap

To prevent the skunk from escaping or tipping over the trap, it is important to securely anchor the trap to the ground. This can be done by using stakes or weights to keep the trap in place.

To make the trap less conspicuous and to prevent the skunk from becoming wary of it, it is also recommended to camouflage the trap. This can be done by placing branches, leaves, or other natural materials around the trap to make it blend in with its surroundings.

When setting up the trap, it is important to handle it carefully and avoid leaving any human scent on it. This can be done by wearing gloves and avoiding contact with the trap as much as possible.

By choosing the right location and securing and camouflaging the trap, you can increase the chances of successfully trapping a skunk. Always be careful when handling traps, and make sure you follow the rules in your area about catching and moving wildlife.

DIY Skunk Trap Construction

marshmallow skunk bait

Materials and Tools Needed

Before starting the construction of a skunk trap, one needs to gather all the necessary materials and tools. Here is a list of items required for building a skunk trap:


  • 1-inch wire mesh
  • Wooden boards (2x4 inches)
  • Screws
  • Nails
  • Bait (e.g. canned cat food, peanut butter, sardines)


  • Saw
  • Hammer
  • Pliers
  • Screwdriver
  • Wire cutters

Step-by-Step Building Guide

Building a skunk trap at home can be a simple and cost-effective solution to remove skunks from your property. How to build a skunk trap, step by step:

  1. Cut the wire mesh into three pieces: one piece measuring 24x48 inches for the bottom, one piece measuring 12x48 inches for the back, and one piece measuring 12x24 inches for the front.
  2. Cut the wooden boards into four pieces: two pieces measuring 48 inches for the sides, and two pieces measuring 22 inches for the top and bottom.
  3. Assemble the wooden boards to create a rectangular frame for the trap.
  4. Attach the wire mesh to the frame using screws and nails. Make sure the mesh is securely attached to the frame.
  5. It's time to get in. Cut a small hole near the top of the front of the trap.
  6. Attach a bait holder to the back of the trap, using wire mesh and screws.
  7. Set the trap in a place where skunks are known to roam and put the bait in the holder.
  8. Check the trap regularly and release the skunk in a safe location.

By following these simple steps, one can easily build a skunk trap at home. This DIY solution can save money and help remove skunks from your property in a humane way.

Pre-Baiting and Baiting Techniques

skunk bait that won't attract cats

Acclimating Skunks to the Trap

Before setting the trap, it is important to acclimate skunks to the area around it.After putting the trap where you want it, you can leave it there for a few days without setting it. This allows skunks to become familiar with the trap and feel comfortable approaching it.

During this period, it is recommended to place small amounts of bait around the trap to entice skunks to investigate the area. This will also help them associate the trap with a positive experience.

Proper Bait Placement Inside the Trap

When it comes to baiting the trap, it's important to place the bait in the right location to increase the chances of catching skunks. The best skunk bait options include canned wet cat food, fish, or chicken.

It is recommended to place the bait at the back of the trap, beyond the trigger plate. This will force skunks to fully enter the trap to reach the bait, increasing the chances of triggering the trap.

To further increase the effectiveness of the bait, it can be helpful to smear a small amount of the bait on the trigger plate. This will encourage skunks to step on the plate, triggering the trap.

Overall, pre-baiting and proper bait placement are crucial for successfully trapping skunks. By acclimating skunks to the trap and strategically placing the bait, the chances of catching skunks can be significantly increased.

Safety and Handling

Protective Gear and Precautions

When setting up and handling skunk traps, it is important to take safety precautions to avoid getting sprayed or injured. At all times, you should wear safety gear like gloves, long sleeves, and pants. You should also protect your eyes and face with a mask so the skunk doesn't spray you.

When handling the trap, it is important to approach it slowly and calmly to avoid startling the skunk. It is also recommended to use a towel or blanket to cover the trap to reduce the skunk's stress levels and prevent it from spraying.

What to Do After Capture

After capturing a skunk, it is important to handle the situation carefully to avoid getting sprayed. It is recommended to cover the trap with a towel or blanket and transport it to a safe location for release.

When releasing the skunk, it is important to do so in a safe and humane manner. It is best to let the skunk go in a wooded area, away from people and other animals. It is also recommended to release the skunk during daylight hours to increase its chances of survival.

In summary, when handling skunk traps, it is important to take safety precautions and approach the situation with care to avoid getting sprayed or injured. After capturing a skunk, it should be released in a safe and humane manner to ensure its survival.

Legal and Ethical Considerations

Understanding Local Wildlife Laws

Before you set up a skunk trap, you should find out what the wildlife laws are in your area. These rules may be different where you live, so it's important to learn about them before you trap any animals. There may be rules about trapping and moving wildlife in some areas that require permits or specific rules.

It's also important to know that some types of skunks may be protected by state or federal laws. In these cases, trapping and relocating them may be illegal. It's important to consult with local wildlife authorities to ensure that you are following all laws and regulations.

Humane Treatment of Captured Skunks

When trapping skunks, it's important to treat them humanely. This means providing them with a comfortable and safe environment while they are in the trap. It's recommended to check the trap regularly and release the skunk as soon as possible to minimize stress and discomfort.

It's also important to release the skunk in an appropriate location. This means releasing them in an area that is suitable for their survival and away from human populations. It's important to avoid releasing skunks near roads or other potential hazards.

In addition to treating skunks humanely, it's also important to use humane trapping methods. This means using traps that don't hurt the skunk and staying away from any methods that might make it suffer needlessly.

Overall, it's important to prioritize the well-being of skunks when trapping them. By following local wildlife laws and treating them humanely, you can help ensure their safety and survival.

Prevention and Long-Term Solutions

Habitat Modification

Changing their habitat is one of the best ways to keep skunks from coming onto your property. Skunks are attracted to areas with abundant food sources and shelter. To reduce the likelihood of skunks taking up residence on a property, homeowners should remove any potential food sources and make the area less hospitable to skunks.

Homeowners can take several steps to modify the habitat to discourage skunks from entering. These steps include:

  • Getting rid of any food sources on the property, like bird seed or pet food
  • Securing garbage cans with tight-fitting lids
  • Sealing up any openings in structures, such as sheds or decks, where skunks could take shelter
  • Removing any brush piles or other debris that could provide cover for skunks

By making these changes, homeowners can make their property less attractive to skunks, reducing the likelihood of an infestation.

Exclusion Techniques

Another effective way to prevent skunks from entering a property is to use exclusion techniques. These techniques involve sealing up any openings or gaps that skunks could use to gain access to a property.

Homeowners can use a variety of exclusion techniques to keep skunks out. These techniques include:

  • Installing sturdy fencing around the property
  • Sealing up any openings in structures, such as sheds or decks, with wire mesh or other materials
  • Placing wire mesh over vents and other openings in the home
  • Installing door sweeps to seal gaps under doors

By using these techniques, homeowners can prevent skunks from entering their property and taking up residence. It is important to note that exclusion techniques should be used in conjunction with habitat modification to achieve the best results.

Overall, by modifying the habitat and using exclusion techniques, homeowners can prevent skunks from entering their property and reduce the likelihood of an infestation.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to trap a skunk with food?

Trapping a skunk with food involves using a bait that is highly attractive to skunks. Place the bait inside the trap and wait for the skunk to enter. It's best not to use baits with strong smells that might attract other animals, and the trap should be put in a place where skunks are known to hang out.

What ingredients are most effective in a homemade skunk lure recipe?

Homemade skunk lure recipes can be effective in attracting skunks to traps. Common ingredients include peanut butter, honey, and cat food. It is important to avoid using ingredients that may be harmful to skunks or other animals.

How to build a skunk trap?

Building a skunk trap involves following a set of instructions or purchasing a pre-made trap. It is important to ensure that the trap is safe and humane, and that it is designed to prevent skunks from escaping or injuring themselves.

How can I create a DIY skunk trap bait that is highly attractive to skunks?

DIY skunk trap baits can be made using a variety of ingredients, including peanut butter, honey, and cat food. You should not use baits with strong smells that might attract other animals, and you should set the trap in a place where skunks are known to hang out.

What are the top bait options to ensure the best results in skunk trapping?

The top bait options for skunk trapping include peanut butter, honey, and cat food. These baits are highly attractive to skunks and are less likely to attract other animals. It is important to avoid using baits that may be harmful to skunks or other animals.

Can marshmallows be used effectively as bait for skunks?

Marshmallows can be used effectively as bait for skunks. They are sweet and highly attractive to skunks, but may also attract other animals. It is important to avoid using too many marshmallows or using them as the sole bait, as this may reduce the effectiveness of the trap.

How can I bait a skunk trap to avoid attracting non-target animals like cats?

To avoid attracting non-target animals like cats, it is important to use baits that are less attractive to these animals. Peanut butter, honey, and cat food are all effective baits for skunks, but may not be as attractive to cats. Additionally, placing the trap in an area where cats are less likely to frequent can also help.

What common household foods are known to irresistibly attract skunks?

Common household foods that are known to irresistibly attract skunks include peanut butter, honey, and cat food. These foods are sweet and highly attractive to skunks, but may also attract other animals. It is important to use these baits in moderation and to avoid using harmful ingredients.

Skunk Control for Residential Areas

Given the significant problems skunks can cause in residential areas, it is crucial to address their presence humanely and effectively. This is where Critter Stop comes into play. 

Critter Stop is a professional wildlife removal company with a stellar reputation for high-quality work and excellent customer service. Their humane methods ensure that skunks and other wildlife are removed from your property safely and efficiently.

Choosing Critter Stop:

  • High-Quality Work: Critter Stop is known for their meticulous and effective pest control solutions.
  • Great Customer Service: With numerous positive reviews online, Critter Stop excels in customer satisfaction, providing personalized and responsive service.
  • Humane Methods: They prioritize humane wildlife removal, ensuring minimal harm to the animals while effectively addressing your pest control needs.
  • Expertise: Critter Stop's team of professionals is well-trained in handling a wide range of pests, including skunks, ensuring your home remains pest-free.

If you are experiencing issues with skunks or other pests in your home, contact Critter Stop for comprehensive and humane pest control services. 

Their expertise and commitment to quality make them the best choice for residential pest control in North Texas.

Contact us at (214) 234-2616 to get a free estimate of our services.

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Lee Gorman
Lee Gorman
13:50 21 Nov 22
I’d give a 10 star review if I could! We had a great experience with Critter Stop. Everyone I dealt was friendly, professional, and reassuring. Phillip was very helpful and knowledgeable about the work he was doing. He walked me around the entire house to make sure I saw and understood the services he provided. He was also really nice and answered all my questions — he is exactly the type of person that should be interacting with customers.I love the fact that they will come back for up to 1 year after installation if any problems occur — this shows me they stand behind their work.The owner was great too, he personally came to my house and walked me through their offering. I recommend critter stop to anyone and everyone!
Susan Casey
Susan Casey
14:53 15 Nov 22
Critter Stop is a fantastic business! Everyone involved is extremely professional and very easy to communicate with. Chisam, the owner, did a great job of explaining the process to get the squirrels out of my attic during the initial free estimate. The exclusion crew who did all of the initial work was fabulous. The crew consisted of Phillip, Nick and Corey who arrived promptly when they said they would. They are happy, positive employees. Everyone is very polite and patient in explaining their work and answering questions. They came back several times to check the traps and finish it off with the fogging. Lester was very good about following up to schedule each trap check with me, and the office staff who took care of the billing was very efficient. Critter Stop is a well run company with honest, trustworthy employees! Thank you to all of you who worked hard to make my attic critter free and for the peace of mind that you guarantee your work. Great to know I can call them if for some reason a squirrel figures out a way to get back in!
Karen Eckholdt
Karen Eckholdt
14:54 22 Sep 22
Critter Stop has made this project easy and extremely professional from start to finish! They are very detailed and competent from start to finish and know so much about their business. They made a problem easy for us and at a reasonable cost. We would be happy to recommend this company and their owners and staff to anyone.
Aaron Echols
Aaron Echols
13:51 03 Aug 22
The guys at Critter Stop responded quickly, were very friendly, and gave us an honest estimate of what we might need. They explained why some items on other quotes were or were not necessary. They communicated well to get us scheduled, and did the work well and quickly. Great service at a fair and competitive price.
Jacob Scribner
Jacob Scribner
19:23 27 Jul 22
Brandon and his other coworker Gavin came to install insulation in my attic. I am very grateful for the hard work and professionalism. My house feels a lot better with the insulation installed. 5 star review. Cory Leach was also very nice and helpful. He came to my house to do another job and was very attentive and professional. Thank you Corey and thank you Critter Stop for helping me.The owner very polite and helpful, I’m glad I found this company to help me.
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