I had noticed the grass in front of my hive mashed down on several occasions, but, silly me, didn't pay much attention. A few days ago I noticed some mud on one side of my hive. After a closer inspection, I could make out some tiny little muddy paw prints. After a little research I discovered that skunks love to scratch on the hive and dine on bees as they emerge. Bad thing about it, this time of year in the deep South, my bees hang out on the outside of the hive until pretty late at night.
I unrolled some 1/2 inch X 1 inch hardware cloth. It was a small roll, so the natural bend ended up making it fit perfectly in a horse shoe shape around the front of my hive from ground level to about 3 feet tall. With that staked down and in place, I set a medium cage trap about 10 feet away.
First night, I caught a possum; second night, nothing, but bait was gone; third night; added a small cage trap about 20 feet away; there was Pepe' Le Pew waiting for me the next morning.
I have been removing the exclusion every morning and replacing it every night, just in case there are more. If I go out of town for a day or two, would it hurt to leave the wire in place?