Live Skunk Found in Maui

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Courtesy: HDOA

A live skunk was found and captured this morning at a maritime container yard at Pier 1 in Kahului, Maui.

The skunk was spotted roaming around in the container yard and was reported to harbor security by a biologist surveying for stranded sea bird fledglings. Harbor security personnel contacted Maui plant quarantine inspectors with the Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture (HDOA). and

Inspectors arrived at the pier at 8 a.m. Harbor security personnel had already cornered the animal and prevented its escape. Inspectors were able to capture the animal shortly after arriving.


The skunk measured about 15 inches from head to tail. A test for rabies will be sent to a mainland laboratory. Inspectors surveyed the area and found no other skunks. HDOA inspectors are investigating how and when the skunk could have made its way to Maui.

This is the second time a skunk has been reported in Maui. The first time occurred in August 2018 when the animal was found at a trucking company.

The first time a skunk was reported in the state was in February 2018, found at Pier 1 in Honolulu. Both skunks tested negative for rabies.


Skunks are prohibited in Hawai‘i and are only allowed by permit for research and exhibition in a municipal zoo. Skunks inhabit the US, Canada, South America, Mexico and other parts of the world. They are also one of the four wild animals considered to be the primary carriers of the rabies virus, a fatal viral disease of mammals most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. Hawai`i is the only state in the U.S. and one of the few places in the world that is rabies-free.

Sightings or captures of illegal and invasive species should be reported to the state’s toll-free Pest Hotline at 643-PEST (7378).

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