Tag Archives: skunk

Skunk babies on the move

What comes here? A writhing ball of hair on twenty feet. (With apologies for the window-blurred photos.)

2015-06-24 Skunk and skunk babies 002A mother striped skunk with her brood. The youngsters huddled around her, keeping their flanks pressed to one another. The whole mass trundled as one. When mother stopped to nose-poke the ground, the whole crew flowed forward to see what she’d found. Then, onward.

One of the four youngsters has a black tail. The others are white-striped on tail and face, like their mom.

2015-06-24 Skunk and skunk babies 0052015-06-24 Skunk and skunk babies 006And off they go, tails aloft. The young stay with their mother for two or three months, so these ones I guesstimate at 6-8 weeks. For a species whose adulthood is mostly solitary (the breeding season is a squall of screams and sprays, so little do they enjoy company), skunks start their lives with an intense cuddling-huddle-bustle bond with their families. Then hormones kick in, I suppose, with a burgeoning taste for perfume.

2015-06-24 Skunk and skunk babies 014

Collective noun: A charm of skunks.