Village may hire its own trapper to remove troublesome skunks

— In August 2008, several Third Street residents appeared before the Liverpool Village Board to complain about skunks inundating the neighborhood.

Mayor Gary White, who was then a trustee, acknowledged the problem. “Typically skunks are nocturnal,” White said then, “but now we’re seeing them out in bright daylight, which makes me worry about rabies.”

As they’ve done for decades, however, village officials urged the troubled residents to utilize the trapping program administered by the town of Salina. It cost $16 for each resident to have traps set.

In April 2011 in two separate incidents, Liverpool Police officers shot and killed two skunks which had been behaving strangely in village yards in broad daylight. One animal was dispatched behind a house on Oswego Street, while another was killed a few blocks away on Sixth Street.

Now, skunks have infested Second Street.

Second St. infested

“I’ve lived here 20 years and I’ve never seen it this bad,” resident Jim Spadafore told village trustees at their Aug. 20 meeting. Spadafore lives on Second Street between Iroquois Lane and Council Place.

“It’s a really big problem this year,” he said. “It’s like an explosion all along Second Street.”

In an Aug. 17 letter to the mayor, Spadafore said he has spent more than $1,000 on skunk removal over the years. “So I have to ask the question, what are we doing as a community to rid the village of skunks?”

Salina’s animal-nuisance wildlife trapper told Spadafore that he is “overwhelmed” by the extent of the skunk problem across the town. As a result, the trapper is unable to prioritize village properties threatened by skunks.

“The quality of life for my family is being compromised,” wrote Spadafore, a recently retired local educator. “I think it’s time for the village of Liverpool to hire their own trapper before a wild animal with rabies attacks a child or a pet.”

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