From mid January to late March, the breeding seasons are in full swing. Squirrels, raccoons, fox and coyotes, and especially skunks are looking for mates.
By now, the squirrels should be bred, but the skunk calls are really picking up. The peak breeding for skunks should be right around Valentine’s Day, continuing into mid March. You may be seeing tracks in the snow, as the males seek out the females that are still in the burrows. Fighting between males, females not quite ready, and possibly the act of mating itself, may produce some awful smell coming from under your steps, porch or deck, and shed.
After an 8 week gestation, the females will give birth and will stay with the litter non-stop for a week or two. Then they will venture out at ANY time of day to refuel in order to feed the young kits, usually late April or early May. At this time, we get calls from concerned people thinking that a skunk seen during the day must be rabid. Not necessarily true. Skunks, like other nocturnal animals may be seen during the day all year long, but especially during the raising of young.
When the young animals start coming out, I will update more frequently as I can.