Raccoons are common animals in America. They are small mammals measuring three feet from the nose tip to the tip of the tail. The animals have longer hind legs on which they sometimes stand on. On the fore legs, they have dexterous toes that are capable of grasping food. Naturally, the nails live in the forested areas next to water sources. However, they have adapted to various environments in America. It is illegal for homeowners to trap them without a license. This has contributed to the marked presence of the animals in urban areas. The animals have in turn become a nuisance to most of urban dwellers. There are concerns about raccoon disease that they bring and the ways of reducing the menace that the animals bring. See more here on raccoon facts.
Raccoons eat various foods. However, in the natural habitats, they eat aquatic creatures such as fish and frogs. While on land, the animals eat birds and bird animals, nuts and vegetables. The animals are not well equipped for hunting. However, there have been records of the animals hunting for squirrel and rats. The animals live in solitary unless there is adequate food supplies. Often, raccoons can be seen together when there is adequate food supply or in mating seasons.
Raccoons have dens and resting areas. The dens are usually dug out by other animals or are natural locations such as hollow spaces in rocky areas. Dents are ideal in that they provide shelter for the animals during times of adverse weather conditions. Some of the den sites where the animals have been found before include chimneys, attics and abandoned vehicles. In urban settings, the den sites are only used during the day or when there is a high traffic of human activity.
Raccoons can be a source of nuisance for the urban population. With the increase in urban raccoon population, the best approach would be to ensure that the common nuisances are understood in order to deter recurrence. One of the most commonly reported nuisance with raccoons is the high enticement of the animals by the leftovers in dumpsters hence their constant curious hunting missions. If one leaves the garbage outside, the raccoons are more or less likely to move to the pits and rummage through the garbage. At the end, there is littering of the yard and a requirement to reorganize the garbage once more. Adding a weight to the dumpster lids can reduce the menace of raccoons rummaging through the garbage.
Raccoons also tend to enter the homes through the chimneys and create a nesting place. This is common during the cold seasons since most of the dens are too cold. The female raccoons often choose the chimneys since they are close to a source of food. While this is an important survival skill for the animal, there is some level of nuisance that the sudden uninvited guest poses. In the event a raccoon has decided to nest in ones chimney, one can play the radio on a loud volume. Importantly, tuning the radio to a talk show mimics human behavior. Alternatively, one can use a broomstick to drive them away from the chimney.
With the ban on trapping the animals in most parts of America, raccoons have increasingly become comfortable around human dwellings. This comfort poses a problem for human beings. Raccoons have roundworms. These are similar to the worms that would be found in cats and dogs but are caused by a different species of roundworms. Raccoons are usually unaffected by the worms. However, these worms can affect humans and their pets. Ingesting the eggs from the round worms result in raccoon infections.
In order to reduce the exposure to roundworms from raccoons, it is imperative to use gloves when creaking the areas where the animals have been sited. Keeping the pets and children away from areas where the animals are usually found will also reduce the chances of contracting the infection. Common hygiene such as hand washing can also reduce the chances of being affected by raccoon’s roundworms. In addition to roundworms raccoons have been linked to rabies. This can occur when one is scratched or bitten by the animal. In the event of any contact with the animal, contacting the veterinarian or a physician is imperative.