Our animal kingdom embraces a very long list of fascinating and curious creatures, critters, and moving things. Depending upon the region in which you reside, you will see a variety of distinct species. If you are a frequent visitor or resident of the Eastern or Northern areas of the country, subsequently woodland animals are the animals you will encounter most often. Among the most intelligent and prevalent of them all is, in actuality, the wild raccoon! Raccoons are spotted on a regular basis in residential areas and in the natural forests and wooded areas of the United States, as well. There are so many problems, topics, and places to discuss when it comes to raccoons, but let’s begin with the fun stuff! Keep on reading to learn some general information regarding wild raccoons, some fun facts, and who to call for expert help and advice in regards to raccoon control and preservation.
Raccoon Names and Species
Raccoons have many names and appellations. This is because they’re observed in several different areas of america, and exhibit marginally different features, habits, and lifestyles. Raccoons are part of the Procyon genus and scientifically known as Procyon Lotor; loosely meaning “dog-like”. In addition to this very formal title, these animals are also referred to as the frequent Raccoon, North American Raccoon, and the Northern Raccoon.
In addition to these colloquial names, raccoons are also referred to by their habitat and behaviors. There are at least six known species of raccoon and various subspecies. They are highly adaptable mammals that could live in various different climates all over the world; including Central, South and North America, Canada, Asia, Europe, and even the Caribbean. This variety leaves room for a good deal of interesting names. Other kinds of raccoons include, but are not limited to, the Ring-Tailed Raccoon, Upper Mississippi Valley Raccoon, the Eastern Raccoon, Ten Thousand Island Raccoon, the Crab-Eating Raccoon, the Tres Marias Raccoon, the Guadeloupe Raccoon, the Coati, the Cozumel Raccoon, and more. The differences among each species include size, weight, fur color, diet, behavior, and other identifiable and physical characteristics.
Raccoons are nocturnal animals, meaning they are active at night and rest during the day. In america, these food sources are commonly turning out to be residential and urban garbage cans and dumpsters.
The start of the year has proven to be their breeding time; with a gestation period of about sixty five days or so. The males do not partake in raising the raccoon pups, so females separate following reproduction. Raising baby raccoons is not a terribly dangerous time period for female raccoons; mostly because raccoons have very few predators. This doesn’t mean that they can’t be subjected to danger.
In certain parts of the world, animals such as coyotes, cougars, mountain lions, and bobcats, and more, will feed on wild raccoons. As natural instinct allows, raccoons are known to claw, bite, hiss, growl, and scream at anything threatening it. This defensive behavior is usually seen in urban areas near humans and domesticated pets.
Raccoons are omnivorous so their diet can consist of everything from invertebrates to plant material. Depending on the time of year, habitat, and species of raccoon, food sources will differ. For example, in the late summer and autumn months, Northern raccoons are known to indulge in fruits, acorns, walnuts, and other seasonal foods that are rich in nutrients and calories. This better prepares them for their winter hibernation period. In the springtime and early summer months, raccoons dine on less favorable pieces, such as worms, insects, and other readily accessible invertebrates.
On top of these easy-to-obtain foods, raccoons will also eat fish, bird eggs, snakes, amphibians, and various different vertebrates; as long as they can reach them or catch them! Other raccoon food preferences include crabs, lizards, plants, berries, crayfish, and even human food. This all depends on where they live and how accessible the food is. Different species of raccoons display different habits in regards to hunting and feeding.
Although not conclusively proven, raccoons are believed to wash their food before eating; also known as “dousing”. There are several theories to explain this behavior; however, most believe it’s just an archaic habit dating back to when raccoons mostly fed on shorelines and foraged food sources from watering holes. Other theories suggest that raccoons can’t create an adequate amount of saliva to consume their food, so they need to moisten it with water for sufficient digestion.
Urban Raccoon Development
Unfortunately, as a result of over-development and mass construction, some species of raccoons have been made to live among humans in residential and urban areas. These raccoons have learned to adapt to this sort of living over the previous fifty years. They use our municipal waste sites to forage food, as well as, home gardens, dumpsters, pet food bowls, and more. They use every opportunity they can to gather and eat food in our metropolitan areas.
For shelter, raccoons in suburban areas are known to use houses, buildings, attics, garages, sheds, roofs, sewer drains, outside play sets, pet houses, hollowed trees, crawl spaces, porches, decks, and more. They are moderately intelligent animals that may learn how to overcome obstacles and remember certain tasks for as much as three decades! They can use their dexterous hands and claws to open gates, pick locks, dig holes, lift, push, and rip away anything in their way. This causes a lot of structural damage to homes and buildings in these municipal neighborhoods and areas.
When building and homeowners experience an animal infestation problem, it’s necessary that they act fast. Structural damage, repairs, cleanup, and attacks are all possible consequences of a raccoon infestation. This is especially vital for families with small children. Raccoons can’t only be defensive and protective of their clan, they’re also able to carry plenty of communicable diseases; including Rabies, Canine Distemper, Leptospirosis, and more. To prevent a raccoon attack or contagious infection, it’s crucial to remove raccoons as soon as you’re aware of them. Typically, an animal control business can be called out to diagnose the issue and facilitate a set of remedies to get rid of the threat. In this circumstance, it is highly advised to hire a business that does not use dangerous and inhumane procedures of animal control. Be sure to call a company that may remove raccoons safely and humanely. An animal control company should never kill raccoons.