The raccoon, also called “coon,” is a stocky mammal about 2 to 3 feet long, weighing 10 to 30 pounds. Raccoons are distinctively marked, with a black “mask” over the eyes and a heavily furred, ringed tail. Raccoon Trapping and Raccoon Removal

Raccoon Habitat:

  • Raccoons are among the most widespread mammals in New York State.
  • The adaptable raccoon can be found everywhere, from the most remote forest to the crowded inner city.
  • Raccoons prefer hardwood forest areas near water.

Raccoon Behavior:

  • Raccoons are nocturnal, mainly feeding at night.
  • Raccoons are omnivorous, eating fruit, nuts, berries, small animals and insects, and also will feed on pet food, garbage, and garden crops.

Female raccoons look for den sites in late winter.

  • Litters of one to seven young are born in April and May. The average litter size is 3 to 5, with only 1 litter of young raised per year.
  • Young raccoons are weaned sometime between 2 and 4 months of age.
  • Young raccoons follow the mother until September or early October when they disperse and establish their own territories.
  • Adult males occupy areas of about 3 to 20 square miles, compared to about 1 to 6 square miles for females.
  • Raccoons do not truly hibernate, but they do “hole up” in dens and become inactive during severe winter weather.

Damage from Raccoons:

Raccoons may cause damage or nuisance problems in a variety of ways, and raccoon tracks often provide evidence of their involvement in damage situations.

  • Raccoons in the house can cause damage or nuisance problems when they seek to gain entrance to attics or chimneys or when they raid garbage in search of food.
  • Raccoons use uncapped chimneys as den sites, raising the young on the smoke shelf or the top of the fireplace box until weaning.
  • Raccoon sounds include scratching, rustling, and chirring sounds.
  • In extreme cases, raccoons may tear off shingles or facia boards to gain access to an attic or wall space.
  • Raccoons may roll up freshly laid sod in search of earthworms and grubs. This is common in mid- to late summer as young raccoons are learning to forage for themselves and during periods of dry weather when other food sources may be less available.

Rabid raccoons have become widespread.

  • Rabies is a viral disease with symptoms similar to distemper.
  • Rabid raccoons may behave aggressively, salivate heavily, or have paralyzed hind legs.
  • Rabies can be transmitted to humans and other animals by the bite of an infected animal.
  • If you suspect a raccoon are rabid, contact local health officials.

Exclusion / Pest Proofing are usually the best method of coping with raccoon damage or getting rid of raccoons.

  • Store garbage in metal or tough plastic containers with tight-fitting lids to discourage raccoons from raiding garbage cans. If lids do not fit tightly, it may be necessary to wire, weight, or clamp them down to prevent raccoons from lifting the lid to get at garbage. Secure cans to a rack or tie them to a support to prevent raccoons from tipping them over.
  • Prevent raccoon access to chimneys by securely fastening a commercial cap of sheet metal and heavy screen over the top of the chimney.
  • Raccoon access to rooftops can be limited by removing overhanging branches.
  • Homeowners attempting to exclude or remove raccoons in the spring and summer should be aware of the possibility that young may also be present. Consult with a wildlife removal company before beginning any excluding process.

Getting Rid of Raccoons:

  • Raccoons are protected by law and a professional must have a license to trap raccoons and remove wildlife. If the tips above to prevent raccoons are unsuccessful, NYDEC suggests, licensed nuisance wildlife control persons should be hired to deal with problem raccoons.

Thomas Pest Services your Saratoga wildlife removal specialists, helping homeowners and business in Chatham, Latham, Clifton Park, Charlton, Saratoga and Mechanicville with effective wildlife solutions. Wildlife can quickly take over a structure to shelter themselves from the outdoor elements. Contact your Albany wildlife removal company to prevent any damages before they can begin. The Clifton Park wildlife removal experts at Thomas Pest Services can help you today with a free inspection to get rid of raccoons!

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