About Raccoons

MaryRowe Posts: 736 ✭✭✭✭

This article just showed up in my email. It seems like a very good summary of basic raccoon facts, with some worthwhile tips on dealing with the critters. I wonder if the one about wrapping a ripening ear of corn to the stalk with filament tape really works.....


  • Lisa K
    Lisa K Posts: 1,946 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hmmm some of the recommendations they have for ponds did really work for me but then I do not have an engineering degree 😁.

    Something I once read said not only do they remember solutions but they also teach it to their kits.

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Posts: 5,498 admin

    My uncle raised 3 abandoned kits as pets. I enjoyed learning their behavior. I am very fond of them, but also enjoy eating them. I think it is good to understand and respect the critters we eat. A tame coon is much like a cat, while a wild one can be absolutely fearless and aggressive as a little bear. They are clever.

  • MaryRowe
    MaryRowe Posts: 736 ✭✭✭✭

    @Lisa K I have watched a mama raccoon lead her kits to my birdfeeders and show them step-by-step how to get around the baffles, unlatch the latches, and generally get around all the deterrents I set up to keep them out. How something can be so cute and so absolutely infuriating at the same time....it takes a raccoon........

  • Linda Bittle
    Linda Bittle Posts: 1,522 ✭✭✭✭✭

    I recently wrote about raccoons for our ReelCamo Girl Facebook page!

    ReelCamo Girl

    I probably get more panicked emails from my friends asking for track ID on common raccoon (Procyon lotor) tracks than any others. It's understandable because those ubiquitous little masked bandits seem to live everywhere!

    Range maps show them over much of North America, including a large portion of southern Canada, all of Mexico, and much of Central America. There seems to be a gap in much of Nevada, parts of Utah, California, and Arizona. Perhaps that's because the western deserts don't offer the correct habitat for them to thrive. Because thrive they do!

    You'll find them in the country along wild rivers and creeks and in the city near - or sometimes even in - human habitats. They have been known to make dens in attic spaces and under decks. They'll raid your trash, eat pet food from the porch, and poach your chickens right from the coop. Additionally, they can carry rabies and raccoon scat is known to carry a dangerous parasite that can infect the human brain! As cute as they are, you don't necessarily want them moving in too close.

    Sometimes the first thing you will see are curious human hand-like tracks on your porch. Tracks that resemble hand-prints of a small child are almost, without exception, always the front tracks of a racoon. Because raccoons have a unique gait, or way of walking, those front tracks are often paired with a larger hind track from the opposite side of the body that looks a little less hand-like. In good substrate the heel of the hind foot will be visible and can look a little bear-like. Both front and hind tracks have 5 toes. Compare to the coyote tracks on either side of the racoon tracks in the photo. Of the animals that leave tracks that are approximately the same size as the raccoon, canines and felines will only show 4 toes on each foot.

    Once you learn to ID raccoon tracks you'll see a lot of them. And I hope it will encourage you to learn other tracks so you always know what's going on in your neighborhood!

    Reelcamogirl Pro Staff Linda Bittle