Pet and wild Skunks eat the following:
- Small reptiles
- Small amphibians (frogs, toads, newts)
- Water snakes
- Beetle larvae
- Spiders – even the black widow spider
- Ground nesting birds
- Other small animals.
Skunks use their long nails to dig into ant colonies and feed on them. The nails also come in handy when they ransack honeybee hives.
Their thick skin keeps them protected from snake bites venom as they attack snakes and feed on them.
The perfect skunk diet should contain 60-70% protein and 30-40% vegetables. In addition, it should also include other essential minerals and supplements.
What Do Skunks Eat?
In the Winter
In winter, skunks mostly eat nuts, vegetables, nuts, fruits, and seeds. In some cases, they may invade garbage and trash for food.
Skunks don’t 100% hibernate during winter and will wake up to move around or leave their den to forage at night.
I have also seen them hunt for small nesting animals like moles, chipmunks, and mice for protein. However, their main diet consists of fruits such as wild grape, cranberry, elderberry, chokeberry, and mountain ash.
Seeds and nuts they love during winter include hickory nuts, pecans, walnuts, birdseed, carrion, and sunflower seeds.
skunks will opt to eat:-
- Other wild berries
During winter, skunks may also search for and eat:-
Plant parts on the ground
In the Summer
During summer, skunks opt for feeding on high-fat, calorie-rich foods such as rats, mice, moles, ground squirrels, chipmunks, and fish.
They will also target small birds and their eggs, as well as salamanders, tiny lizards, snakes, and frogs. Insects such as grubs, larvae, worms, beetles, and grubs also make up part of their diet during summer.
Skunks are notorious for attacking honeybee hives and slurping their honey, larvae and adult bees. Their thick fur keeps them protected from stings, and they will consume adult bees, honeycomb, and larvae.
They also frequently dig up and devour wasp and hornet nests, again targeting both the larvae and adults.
Outside of these protein sources, skunks will also eat fruits, leaves, grasses, nuts, and seeds.
In the Spring
Skunks will eat plants if insects and fruits are not available during spring.
in the grass or in Your Yard
They will eat bugs, insects, and plants in the grass.
They might also consume some human garbage they consider delicious.
In the Wild
Where possible, skunks will forage for and eat:
- Frogs and toads
- Other small animals.
- Edible leaves
- Nutritious grasses
- Plant roots
- Birds and other eggs
Other things they would eat include:
In the Garbage
In the scarcity of food, skunks will eat target other food courses, such as:-
Foods To Avoid When Feeding Skunks
Not all foods are safe for pet skunks and because they eat them does not mean it is safe to feed them:
- A heavy plant/veggie-based diet. They could lose bonemarrow.
- Never feed the dog and/or cat food. These contain too much protein and fat that will make your skunk obese.
- Don’t feed them salami, bologna, or any other lunch meat
- Never feed them hotdogs
- DO NOT feed them asparagus. It causes seizures.
- Never feed them onions as it may lead to anemia
- Please don’t feed them birdseed mix such as sunflower seeds.
- Avoid feeding them raw nuts and some grains. These foods contain moulds and yeast that may trigger allergic reactions.
- Feeding them chocolates may lead to diabetes and cause seizures.
Ensure you feed them a balanced diet, and they get enough exercise.
Are There Any Commercial Skunk Foods?
Yes! Commercial skunk foods are sold on online marketplaces such as Amazon etc.
They also make nutritional supplements and canned insects to provide protein for your skunk. However, if you can make the meals by yourself, it’s much more manageable.
Can Skunks Eat Grapes?
Green, black and red grapes as well as seedless are excellent choices for skunks.
Do Skunks Eat Carrots?
Carrots are safe to feed skunks. You can slice and dice before feeding.
Can Skunks Eat Celery?
Feeding celery to pet skunks is fine. Remember to feed in small amounts though.
Can Skunks Eat Cat Food?
Although skunks will eat cat food, it is not healthy for them. Cat food contains too much protein and fat that will make your skunk obese.
Can Skunks Eat Tomatoes?
Yes, skunks actually enjoy eating tomatoes; all kinds.
Can Skunks Eat Dog Food?
Dog food fed in small amounts won’t harm your pet skunk. It becomes an issue when fed consistently since dog food contains too much protein for skunks.
Do Skunks Eat Cucumbers?
Cucumbers are very rich in water and a great treat to feed skunks during the hot weather.
Do Skunks Eat Grass?
Skunks can eat grass, leaves, grains etc.
Do Skunks Eat Hay?
Skunks are able to eat plant materials, including hay. They may not find it enticing though but will eat it to survive.
Do Skunks Eat Snakes?
Yes! Skunks eat all kinds of snakes.
Do Skunks Eat Ants?
Skunks will eat insects such as termites, ants, bugs etc. during summer and spring.
Do Skunks Eat Meat?
Yes, skunks are able to eat insect and animal meat.
Do Skunks Eat Birds?
Yes! If they come across a dead bird, they’ll most likely try it out. They’re opportunistic eaters.
Do skunks eat chipmunks?
Yes, skunks may hunt baby chipmunks and feed on dead adult chipmunks too.
Do Skunks Eat Baby Birds?
Skunks may even eat the eggs or flightless young of ground-nesting birds.
Do Skunks Eat Dead Birds?
Yes, they do.
Will Skunks Eat Dog Poop?
If it smells good to them, skunks will try dog poop out especially if it contains yummy meals.
Do Skunks Eat Birdseed?
Yes, although it is not good for them.
Do Skunks Eat Roadkill?
If it is available, skunks will eat them.
Do Skunks Eat Apples?
Skunks like apples. They find it yummy and delicious.
Do Skunks Eat Grass Seed?
Yes, they do. They like the taste.
Do Skunks Eat Grasshoppers?
Yes! Skunks eat grasshoppers, crickets and locusts in your yard.
Do Skunks Eat Crickets?
A skunk’s diet include crickets and grasshoppers.
Do Skunks Eat Potatoes?
Skunks enjoy potatoes; sweet ones
Do Skunks Eat Crab Apples?
Skunks also eat crab apple fruit.
Do Skunks Eat Squirrels?
Yes! If an opportunity presents itself, skunks will eat ground and dead squirrels.
Do Skunks Eat Ticks?
No, they do not.
Do Skunks Eat Porcupines?
No, they do not. Why would it?
Do Skunks Eat Avocados?
Avocados is poisonous to both pet and wild skunks.
Can Skunks Eat Chickens?
Yes, skunks will kill young chickens and eat eggs, they rarely kill mature chickens. If they do, they gnaw on the bone and the head.
Can Skunks Eat Chocolate?
The theobromine found in chocolate is poisonous to skunks
Can Skunks Eat Peanuts?
Yes, peanuts nuts and butter can be fed in small amounts to skunks.
Can Skunks Eat Bananas?
Bananas are safe and healthy for skunks.