Unlike some species, the highly adaptable and intelligent raccoon thrives in human-developed areas. Unfortunately, because of this ability to flourish in environments as diverse as urban cities and the untouched wilderness, the small mammal is often blamed for wildlife-human conflicts. Raccoons are omnivorous and will eat most foods, which is typically the cause of the conflict. Simple steps, such as securing trashcans and feeding companion animals indoors, usually prevent the problem from occurring in the first place.
When raccoons are already present, sometimes homeowners merely need to mildly harass the animals using techniques such as placing a bright flashlight or loud radio in the den site, and then seal any entrances to get them to move on and stay out. However, in the spring and summer, it is necessary to make sure the raccoons leave with their young in tow. With some patience and a bit of research on humane, non-lethal methods for dealing with a particular species, it is not difficult to solve wildlife-human conflicts (see story pages 10-13).
Photo by Martin Woike/Foto Natura/Minden Pictures