Some residents in northwest suburban Streamwood, as well as other suburbs, say that the skunk problem has become an epidemic.
And some animal control businesses are reporting that business has never been better.
The number of skunks trapped in the Chicago area went from about 6,700 in 2010 to about double that in 2016, according to the most recent stats from the Illinois Department of National Resources.
And experts say it's even worse now.
The recent warmer winters are to blame because they've allowed skunks to survive for several years.
Streamwood resident Phil Branecki first noticed the skunks in the backyard and was concerned about his kids and dogs winding up on the wrong end of the pungent skunk spray.
He said that aside from the odor, he was worried because skunks are a carrier of rabies.
State law allows only licensed animal control companies to trap skunks.
Katy Lundsteen, of Suburban Wildlife Control, usually tranquilizes the skunk before carrying it out. State law then requires him to euthanize skunks.
Suburban Wildlife Control has been busy all over the suburbs for the last month or so.
In Streamwood, Brad Lundsteen, Suburban Wildlife Control, recently found a young skunk inside a cage. A family of skunks has been making its home in a hole under this backyard shed and Lundsteen had set up the cage to catch them when they come out at night.
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