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Fast Facts: Skunks

Maybe you’ve never seen a skunk, but you’ve most definitely smelled one. The foul-smelling spray emitted by striped skunks is a pretty good defense mechanism. The smell is so bad, most animals keep their distance. And you have to give skunks a pretty wide berth, because they can discharge that spray more than 10 feet and still hit their target. The smell travels even farther, sometimes miles away.

(Photo via Shutterstock)

If you find yourself on the receiving end of a skunk’s spray, don’t say you weren’t warned. Before unleashing their most potent weapon, skunks will lift their tails, stomp their feet, hiss and growl. If that’s not enough of a warning to get away, the skunk will turn around and lift its back legs before unleashing the spray.


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