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Raccoons nest in which of the following locations?
A) Tree Cavities
E) All of the above
Correct Trivia Answer: E
“Raccoons nest in tree cavities, chimneys, ground burrows, sewers, attics, garages, etc.”
The “masked bandit” has adapted well to the urban landscape. Raccoons are usually classified as furbearers or game animals, and special permits are usually required to control these critters when they get themselves into a nuisance situation.
Raccoons carry ectoparasites such as fleas, mites and ticks. These ectoparasites can be controlled by an insecticide treatment after the raccoons are evicted.
They are also host to more serious diseases like raccoon roundworm and rabies. Raccoon roundworm is spread via microscopic eggs in raccoon feces. Feces should only be cleaned up by trained personnel with the proper safety equipment.
Controlling infections of this parasite requires minimizing contact with areas inhabited by raccoons. Fecal contamination of an area can result in millions of eggs being deposited and therefore available for infection. These eggs are extremely resistant to environmental conditions, being able to survive for several years. Any area contaminated with raccoon feces should be cleaned and the feces, as well as any contaminated feed, straw or hay, burned. Children and pets should be kept away from these contaminated areas until a thorough cleaning has occurred.
Raccoon damage includes preying on birds, nests, and feeders. Garden crops are often raided, as are garbage cans. Raccoons will roll sod for worms, grubs, and insects. Raccoons enter dwellings for shelter in the winter and to raise young in the spring and early summer. They often cause damage to vents and shingles when entering attics. They will enter chimneys and rest on the smoke-shelf behind the damper in the fireplace. Raccoons are nocturnal, average 2’ to 3’ long and weigh 10 - 20 lbs. They are omnivorous, eating both plant and animal foods, such as fruits, nuts, berries, grain, bird eggs, nestlings, insects, amphibians, small rodents, etc.
They usually breed in February or March and have a 60 day gestation. A litter can be from 1- 8 pups, with 4 or 5 being the average. Young are born from March to June and open their eyes at about 3 weeks of age. The pups are usually weaned at 8 - 12 weeks.
Raccoons nest in tree cavities, chimneys, ground burrows, sewers, attics, garages, etc. Raccoons do not truly hibernate in winter, but “hole up” for days, weeks, or even months, depending on the weather.
Their home range is 3 - 20 square miles for males, 1 - 6 square miles for females. Home ranges may be less in urban areas where there is easier access to life requirements.
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