• Lower Cliff Dwelling


    National Monument Arizona

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  • Visitor Center is closed

    The Visitor Center and bookstore will be closed for several weeks for construction. A temporary Visitor Center will be set up in the parking lot. The trail to the Lower Cliff Dwelling will be open during this period. No entrance fees will be collected.

Striped Skunk

striped skunk

Striped Skunk

NPS Photo

Striped Skunk
Mephitis mephitis

Body length: 13 - 18"; weight 6 – 14 lbs.
Diet: Seeds, roots, berries, and small mammals

Striped skunks spray their scent as a defense against predation and molestation. The offensive odor is caused by a sulfur-containing compound called mercaptan, which is closely related to the scents added to natural gas to enable detection of leaks. Tomato juice neutralizes mercaptan, and will help to remove the smell of skunk from clothes, hair, or dog fur.

This species is one of our most widespread and common mammals, occurring throughout the US, Canada, and Mexico. All skunks eat a wide variety of foods including insects, small mammals, seeds, carrion, fruits, and other vegetation. Close relatives include ferrets, otters, and badgers. Striped skunks occur throughout Tonto National Monument, though they are most often observed in developed and riparian areas. Like all skunks, they are rarely active during the day.

Did You Know?

striped skunk

Four different varieties of skunk have been seen at Tonto National Monument - the hooded, hog-nosed, striped, and spotted. They may look different, but they all smell the same! More...