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Raccoons: Are they Harmful?

There’s hardly an animal on the market that’s extra entertaining, and extra charming, then the raccoon. Or quite, there are a lot charming so long as you aren’t the one enduring their consideration!

two raccoons on a wooden fence

Raccoons are infamous for breaking into rubbish cans, outbuildings and typically even properties of their endless quest for meals and nesting areas.

Amazingly clever, and able to intricate and dexterous drawback fixing, raccoons could be one animal pest that could be very troublesome to manage with out resorting to deadly measures.

They will additionally get surprisingly huge, and plenty of of them are imply! This raises one apparent query: are raccoons harmful to folks?

Sure, raccoons are thought of to be harmful to folks. A menace to our properties and animals alike, they’ll inflict a reasonably vital chunk and probably carry the rabies virus.

They positive look cute and cuddly, and who can resist that black masks they’ve, however you’d be sensible to depart raccoons nicely alone wherever you encounter them.

Even raccoons that hang around close to cities and suburbs can’t be trusted and do behave unpredictably.

An excellent-natured handout would possibly lead to you getting a nasty chunk with an accompanying an infection. There’s tons extra to find out about raccoons, and notably how they work together with folks. I’ll let you know all about it down beneath.

Raccoon Overview, Temperament and Habitat

Raccoons are mammals which might be native to North America. They’re identified for his or her distinctive black masks round their eyes and bushy tails with black and white rings.

Raccoons are usually present in forested areas, however they’re additionally fairly widespread in city and suburban environments.

It’s because human exercise and habitation supplies raccoons with straightforward sources of meals quite than true habitat loss.

Talking of meals, raccoons are omnivorous, consuming animal and plant matter alike. They may even readily eat human and pet meals that’s neglected or present in rubbish cans.

Raccoons are primarily lively through the evening and they’re fairly agile, in a position to climb bushes and swim adeptly. This makes them a specific nuisance within the wee hours of the morning!

Raccoons are additionally well-known, or quite notorious, for his or her intelligence and problem-solving talents.

They’ve been identified to make use of instruments, comparable to rocks, to assist them entry meals, they usually can open advanced locks and latches or negotiate impediment programs to get at meals or shelter.

It’s the hunt for the latter than generally sees raccoons invade properties and different constructions, since they’re in search of nesting websites.

Feminine raccoons usually give start to litters of 2-5 cubs, and they’re protecting of their younger.

It’s widespread to see household models or tight-knit bands of females dwelling collectively, although most sexually pure males keep solo except mating.

As a result of raccoons are so daring, invasive and adaptive, this often brings them in to shut contact with folks, typically with unlucky outcomes!

Do Raccoons Defend Their Territory?

Typically no, although mom raccoons will ferociously attempt to defend her infants and nesting space.

This is likely one of the most typical causes raccoons wind up attacking folks; people attempt to displace or relocate the raccoons, and the captured critters go on the offensive!

Do Raccoons Act Aggressively Towards Every Different?

Sure. Male raccoons, notably those that aren’t sexually mature but, typically kind bands to hunt and forage collectively.

They will act aggressively towards one another in areas of competitors comparable to meals provide. Feminine raccoons with younger may even be very aggressive towards any male since males typically interact in infanticide.

Do Raccoons Threaten Folks?

Sure, however normally solely when individuals are encroaching on their nest or younger, when the raccoon is trapped, cornered or injured, or when raccoons have gotten so daring that they’ve misplaced their concern of individuals.

The latter is particularly probably for raccoons that reside fulltime in a neighborhood or metropolis.

Have There Been Recorded Raccoon Assaults on Folks?

Sure, there have been. Though uncommon, it’s believed {that a} couple dozen folks every year is likely to be attacked by a raccoon and bitten, not together with incidents related to skilled pest management or wildlife removing.

Most of those assaults are as a consequence of encroachment, though rabies just isn’t out of the query.

Fortunately, there has solely been one identified case the place an individual has died on account of a raccoon assault, and that was as a consequence of rabies.

What Will Set off a Raccoon Assault on a Particular person?

Three issues, usually talking:

  • an individual has cornered a raccoon or posed a bodily menace to the raccoon or its younger. In these instances, the animal will lash out in protection, and would possibly combat ferociously quite than abandoning its kits.
  • the animal is trapped or injured. Raccoons don’t know that folks would possibly simply be attempting to assist, and can assault out of concern.
  • the raccoon has misplaced its concern of people for one cause or one other. The commonest cause is because of dwelling round and amongst folks in a built-up space, and particularly as a consequence of folks feeding them.

That is harmful habits as it might probably make a raccoon unafraid of people quicker, and extra prone to act aggressively if confronted or denied meals.

One other doable cause for a raccoon’s lack of concern is rabies. Raccoons can carry this illness, although not as typically as popularly thought.

Additionally they die rapidly as soon as they’re contagious, so the rabies menace from raccoons is minimal. Nevertheless, in case you are ever bitten by any raccoon it’s necessary to hunt medical help and get examined without delay.

Are Raccoons Sturdy?

Not likely. Raccoons are robust sufficient to climb and scurry round, and powerful sufficient to ship a fairly imply chunk, however bodily they aren’t threatening in comparison with a human.

Can Raccoons Chunk?

Sure, and they’re going to when known as for! Biting is a raccoon’s solely significant manner of defending itself. They’re truly very succesful biters, with enamel tailored to crushing and tearing meals.

And this implies they are often harmful when provoked or cornered, although general they’re much extra of a nuisance animal than a real menace.

What Does a Raccoon Assault Look Like?

A raccoon assault consists of a cost or typically a mock cost adopted by biting any a part of their foe that’s inside attain.

Raccoons are fairly fast on the bottom, so if you happen to’re unable to maneuver rapidly (say, since you are beneath a deck) then the raccoon will probably be on you earlier than you’ll be able to escape. They may then chunk repeatedly and typically claw the goal…

As at all times, be particularly vigilant when you will need to get near a raccoon, and double your warning if one is appearing erratically because it might need rabies!

How Do You Reply to a Raccoon Assault?

The perfect protection is escape and evasion. If it’s doable, again away slowly, and keep away from eye contact previous to the raccoon truly charging.

If unimaginable, defend your self with no matter objects you’ll be able to put between you and the raccoon like a coat or a broomstick. Raccoons aren’t very huge or robust, and simple to overpower with a sturdy defend or weapon.

In a worst-case situation, you might must stomp the raccoon to dispatch it. Don’t dry to seize it with out sturdy gloves and gauntlets: they’re wriggly, and have unfastened pores and skin to assist them keep away from being snagged by predators, so the raccoon will be capable of twist and go to work in your fingers as an alternative.

Do what you’ll be able to to keep away from being bitten, and get away when you’ll be able to.

Will a Raccoon Eat a Particular person?!

Sure, in the event that they discovered a lifeless physique, anyway. No raccoon could be so crazed or determined as to assault a human as meals. However they’re scavengers, they usually do eat meat, so a raccoon will probably take a chunk out of your physique if you happen to perish.

Can Folks Catch Ailments from Raccoons?

Sure, and fairly a number of! Essentially the most extreme and infamous is rabies, and raccoons do carry this virus.

However raccoons may also unfold different parasites and sicknesses like salmonella, roundworm, leptospirosis, canine distemper, and extra.

So it’s necessary to take care when coping with a raccoon as even contact with out bites or scratches can go away you open to an infection.

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