Striped Skunk

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Size
The body size of this animal is approximately 18 inches, with a further 10 inches added to its length by its tail. Weights for this animal should be in the range of 2.5 to 14 pounds.

Habitat and Distribution
This animal can be found throughout most of Northern America and down to Northern Mexico, where they live in a variety of habitats from woodland and farmland through to urban areas.

Age
The captive lifespan of this animal in generally around 12 to 18 years however in the wild they are not known to grow much older than 6. Approximately half of these animals in the wild however do not grow up to be older than 1 to 2 years.

Diet
Their diet is made up of a variety of insects, fruits, nuts & seeds, vegetable matter, eggs and occasionally young animals such as small mammals and birds.

Groups and Breeding
Males generally live by themselves, whilst females may live in small groups, sharing a single den. During the mating season which lasts from February to March, the males will search out a mate, and this female may then give birth to around 4 or 6 babies after a 42 to 63 day gestation period.

Threats
Skunks are excellent at eradicating insects, and very rarely damage crops or eat poultry, making them a welcome visitor to peoples gardens and to agricultural areas. However their population numbers remain fairly steady, having a number of natural predators.

Interesting facts
These animals have a very well developed scent gland at their rear end from which they can squirt a foul smelling spray to deter predators. It is also used by males for scent marking their territory