At first glance, it resembled a mop, or perhaps the remnants of the wig Elizabeth Taylor wore in a 1960's photograph when she decided to match her shih tzu However, the mop moved, revealing itself as. . . .
Given that it was not yet fully dark, and I had always thought of skunks as nocturnal creatures, and this skunk was moving very slowly and in a wobbly fashion, I was concerned and enlisted the expertise of the good folks on the Wildlife Gardeners Forum. The consensus was that the skunk was probably fine.
Certainly, it waddled on its way in a seemingly unconcerned fashion. When I returned from greeting the neighbors who had just returned from a winter in Florida, the skunk had vanished, probably into one of the numerous holes found in the backyard extension of the city wildlife refuge. Later,discussing this sighting with the people across the street, I learned that this particular readily identifiable skunk has been in the neighborhood for at least a couple of years and is evidently healthy and unconcerned about the human and canine activity in the area where she has chosen to forage for grubs.