City earmarks $250K in budget to trap skunks, rats

Windsor's skunk and rat population is increasing and now the city is looking to hire a full- time trapper.

City officials are looking to hire a trapper to address a growing skunk and rat population

Trapping Skunks

10 years ago
Duration 2:12
The City of Windsor will spend up to $250,000 on skunk and rat trapping this year.

Windsor's skunk and rat population is increasing and now the city is looking to hire a full- time trapper.

The city’s decision to budget $250,000 to deal with Windsor’s skunk and rat problem has been embraced by some Windsorites.

"I’m very thankful now that there are some options for us now to deal with this problem," said Cynthia Lane, who wants to be first in line to take advantage of the city's new program.

Lane said she’s been afraid to let her dog Zeke out after he was sprayed recently.

 "When he was sprayed it certainly brought a lot of chaos into our home," Lane said. "The smell permeates absolutely everything in your house for weeks.  There's no getting around it, it's on our clothing."

The city is looking to hire a full-time employee to trap skunks and rats, a vet to euthanize the animals, and possibly a part-time clerk.

Ward 4 Councillor Alan Halberstadt said skunks aren’t the only problem.

He hears restaurant owners complain about rats all the time.

"Businesses that deal with food and they don't pack it up as well as they should and there's grease and that kind of stuff and that's what rats love," he said.

Halberstadt added that any area where there's food is a hotspot for rats.

But these factors don’t just attract the rat population, according to Ted Forman.

Forman traps skunks for Bob’s Animal Control and he’s been busy.

He said, "plastic garbage bags should be banned" because the best way to keep animals away is to cut off the food supply and that means closed garbage containers.

"It’s the worst I’ve seen it … the problem is my competition lets them go so they’re just moving the problem to a different area," Forman said.

According to Forman, euthanizing one female skunk will prevent another 20 to 25 skunks from finding their way into someone’s back yard.

And it’s not just the smell people should be worried about.

"The protocol for getting bit by a skunk is to go straight to the hospital to get treated for rabies," said Forman, who’s been bitten twice.