As a wildlife photographer, I’m always on the lookout for interesting animals to photograph, even during a quick restroom break! Yesterday at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma, I had an amusing encounter with a baby striped skunk.
As I approached the restroom, I noticed a small black and white fur-ball ambling around near the doorway. Realizing it was a baby skunk, I paused to observe it. The curious little one spotted me and immediately charged in my direction! It stopped short a few feet away then ran at me again, repeating this behavior several times.
I could tell the baby skunk was just defending itself the only way it knew how. These animals are known to unleash a potent spray when frightened, so I kept my distance to avoid getting sprayed.
After grabbing my camera from my car, I was able to capture some photos of the feisty baby. It scurried around, exploring the area near the restroom, and I didn’t see any adult skunks nearby.
At this age, around 2 months old, the baby was likely recently weaned and learning to fend for itself. Striped skunks nurse for the first 8-10 weeks before transitioning to solid food like insects, small mammals, and eggs. The babies stay with their mother until reaching sexual maturity around one year old.
It was entertaining to observe the small but spirited striped skunk pup, even if it saw me as a threat! I’m glad I could capture the encounter through photography without getting sprayed. Wildlife photography often leads to surprising moments like this.
- Camera: Canon EOS R5
- Lens: Canon RF 100-500 mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM
- Location: Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge (Oklahoma)
- Date and Time Taken: July 27, 2022 (07:06 A. M.)
- Exposure Mode: Aperture Priority
- Aperture: f7.1
- Shutter speed: 1/1250
- ISO: 6400
- Exposure Compensation: 0
- Focal Length: 500 mm