We've had a skunk in the 'hood for several months. Maybe longer, half a year? A whole year?
I've lost track, except for when I see it. Sometimes it's in our tiny orchard. Other times, it's in the drain tube under our driveway. One night in heavy rain, as I leapt for the shelter of the garden shed, I heard it hiss at me from below the deck boards. Oh, and how could I forget the night it kicked everyone out of the coop so it could have an egg dinner.
Wherever it is, we give each other plenty of room and I try to move slowly and loudly so that we don't surprise each other.
After last night, I now know that "it" is a she and she had babies.
Gusty was just heading out to lock up the chickens when she yelled, "a skunk is chasing the chickens!!" I'd just flopped for the night, but that gets a girl moving. oof.
I thought it was mama, who isn't the least bit afraid of me. With that in mind, I knew I had to be something she had never seen and I had to be big and loud.
My weapon of choice? A blue tarp. Not just any blue tarp. A 20 foot crinkly tarp, wrapped around my shoulders like superman and flailing high in the wake of my fast moving feet.
I came out from around the garage, yelling loudly, cape flying (not so proudly) to lay eyes on the tiniest little skunk kit.
A baby. Not chasing chickens but *trying* to chase chickens. Jumping in and out of the food dish, scampering around like a 10 week pup. Basically, having the time of his life because mama wasn't home.
My cape scared him real good, which I felt badly about later. But he ran for home and no one got hurt.
Home happens to be under the garden shed.
It should be an interesting summer for sure. But it was still the cutest thing I'd ever seen.