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Observations of Eastern Spotted Skunk Reproduction, Mortality, and Behavioral Interactions in Alabama

Kassandra J. Arts1, Tyler R. Sprayberry1,2, William C. Cornelison1,2, and Andrew J. Edelman1,*

1Department of Biology, University of West Georgia, Carrollton, GA 30118. 2Office of Environmental Service, Georgia Department of Transportation, Atlanta, GA 30308. *Corresponding author.

Southeastern Naturalist,Volume 20, Special Issue 11 (2021): 119–125

Spilogale putorius (Eastern Spotted Skunk) is a cryptic and little-studied species that has declined in abundance. We report observations of reproduction, mortality, and behavioral interactions for the Appalachian subspecies of the Eastern Spotted Skunk in Alabama. We observed 1 adult skunk with 2 assumed offspring in July, mortality events of 4 radio-collared skunks likely caused by both avian and mammalian predators, and 2 interactions of a skunk with other species: 1 with a Procyon lotor (Raccoon) and 1 with a Lynx rufus (Bobcat). We also describe an interaction between 2 skunks that included a vocalization. Combined, these observations provide insight into the reproduction, mortality, and behavior of this species of conservation concern.

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