Getting Creative With Scents
This week, we treat our readers to a pair of examples of using
natural animal scents in particularly unorthodox ways.
Skunk Scent Repels Vermin
For many years hunters have capitalized on the use of natural plant
and animal scents to cover human scent or to attract game animals.
Now, enterprising law enforcement officers are learning how to use
concentrated animal scents to repel unsavory characters and
behavior from specific buildings and locations.
According the makers of Skunk Shot gel, a growing number of law
enforcement agencies across the country have turned to its product
to ward off trespassers. A New Zealand firm, Connovation, which
manufactures and distributes the gel, originally developed the
product as a dog and cat deterrent-but they’ve now discovered that
it works great to clear out crime-ridden crack houses as
The Los Angeles County sheriff’s department uses Skunk Shot in
abandoned buildings that once attracted prostitutes and drug
addicts-that is, until the ne’er-do-wells got a whiff of
high-octane skunk scent.
In Richland County, South Carolina, the sheriff’s department
proclaims that since it began using the concentrated gel, vagrants’
use of abandoned buildings has literally taken a nosedive
“In the 11 places we’ve used it, it has been very successful,”
Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott told the Columbia S.C.
Steal a Tree and Urine for Trouble
Hunters and trappers have a long history of using natural scents,
including animal urine, as both an attractant and cover when
pursuing their quarry in the field.
Some innovative landscapers in Nebraska have found that certain
natural animal scents can also act as a deterrent against those
unsavory characters who may have designs on filching fir trees
every December to use for their personal holiday decorations.
That’s what was happening at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln
City, where tree thieves were regularly hitting the
evergreen-studded campus every Christmas season.
Until 12 years ago, that is.
That’s when the campus landscaping crew began spraying all the fir,
spruce and other Christmas-type greenery with a malodorous
concoction of fox urine and glycerin.
“It is fine when it is outside,” landscape manager Kirby Baird told
the campus newspaper, The Daily Nebraskan. “But once it
warms up, you can’t have it in your house for more than five
Apparently, the word about the urine-scented trees has spread
across the campus like, uh, a bad smell. As a result, only one tree
has been cut in the past five years.
“It smells just like what it is,” Baird said.