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Seeing wildlife from the comfort of your home or back yard is always enjoyable, until they become a nuisance. Most nuisance wildlife can be taken care of in the same way, but raccoons pose a particular problem because of their cleverness, adaptability, and potential to carry diseases. Knowing more about the habits of raccoons can help you make your yard and home an unwelcome habitat for these animals, and help you to get rid of raccoons.
Raccoon Habitats and Eating Habits
Raccoons are usually found in wooded areas near lakes, streams, and rivers, but since they are so adaptable, they often make their homes in urban and suburban areas just as easily. Now what do raccoons eat? Well… Raccoons are omnivores; so they like to eat fruits, berries, nuts, acorns, corn, and grains, crayfish, clams, fish frogs, snails, insects, rabbits, muskrats, and eggs. When these are not available, they’ll scavenge in garbage cans and compost piles, eat pet foods, etc. Raccoons are not picky eaters.
Some other raccoon facts include: raccoons find backyards, alleys, and neighborhoods very enticing because they offer food and shelter with little effort on the raccoons’ part. Suburban raccoon populations can quickly become very large because of the accessibility of food and shelter.
Raccoon Behavior and Diseases
These animals are clever and strong, and if a mother raccoon is nursing young, she can be very aggressive. Raccoons are known to knock over garbage cans, create dens in chimneys, tear off shingles and fascia to enter homes, can enter and destroy attic and wall space, and also damage gardens and fruit trees. They are not only destructive, but also clever, known to unlatch fences and open bins and containers.
Raccoons can also carry diseases. Raccoon feces can carry roundworm eggs, and can carry ticks, fleas, lice, and mange, and rabies. Another burning question a homeowner might have; are raccoons dangerous to humans? While raccoons are generally docile and curious, they can be dangerous to humans. If a raccoon is carrying rabies or any diseases, or has recently had babies, you need to stay clear.
For those who are unfortunate enough to have to ask themselves the question; how do I get rid of a raccoon? There is no easy answer since they are clever, strong, and adaptable. Raccoons can be tricky to manage and it can be hard to know how to keep raccoons away. Habitat modification and exclusion are the best options for raccoon control.
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