Tag: raccoons

Use Your Bird Seed Wisely

One of the easiest ways to deter unwanted wildlife from getting into your home is to get bird feeders away from the house. We love the birds, but the hard truth is that the bird seed people put in their feeders attracts all sorts of critters, from raccoons to deer to squirrels and mice. Birds are notoriously messy in their eating habits, as you can see from the picture above. Raccoons and other critters will often come to the area by night to scavenge the spilled birdseed. Enterprising raccoons or squirrels will actually climb up and knock the birdfeeder around to intentionally spill more seed. A lot of bird seed gets consumed this way; in fact, it has been estimated that for every 20 pounds of bird seed a homeowner puts out, 11 pounds of it will get consumed by creatures other than birds. The danger in this is that…

Use Your Bird Seed Wisely
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Jumping Raccoon in Battle Creek

Most of us are familiar with the cat’s uncanny ability to safely survive falls from great heights, and it’s not just jumping down off of counters and high tables; a cat in Boston recently fell 19 stories and survived with only a bruise [1]. And apparently this sort of thing is very common in big cities. The cat can survive these sorts of falls because they are designed with an innate ability to know which way is down and splay their legs to give a sort of “parachute effect” when they fall. This is called an aerial righting reflex, says Robert Dudley, a biologist at the animal flight laboratory at the University of California – Berkeley, and it is possessed by every animal that is naturally a tree dweller, as are cats. It is inevitable that the cat will fall eventually, and nature has equipped them with the ability to survive…

Jumping Coon
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Mystery Robber of Unadilla

Unadilla, Michigan. A sleepy little town about a half hour west of Ann Arbor with a population of around 3,000. The sort of place where people live quietly, mind their own business, and enjoy a simple country living. It seemed like an unlikely place for a string of break-ins, yet that’s exactly what local law enforcement were confronted with in March, 2016. The culprit appeared to be violently kicking in doors and ransacking garages: The local law enforcement assumed they were dealing with a conventional breaking and entering case and began notifying residents of a robber in the area. People were on edge. But one homeowner who was victimized by the Unadilla robber noticed that the robber’s method of getting his garage door open seemed rather strange. For one thing, his door was all pulled up on the inside: But what kind of robber pulls a door up from the…

raccoon pulls up door
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Raccoon Attack!

Creature Control gets many inquiries about rabid animals. It can be frightening to see a raccoon or skunk wandering around the yard acting erratically – or a bat swooping around the living room at night! Usually, there is nothing to worry about. Rabies is relatively rare in most common animals; even when you see an animal acting strangely, it is most likely a case of distemper and not rabies. You can read here for more information on animal distemper. However, that does not mean it never happens, as demonstrated by an incident in New Jersey. WILX in New Jersey reports that a young boy was attacked by a rabid raccoon on his way to school. From the WILX article: “New Jersey health officials say a raccoon that attacked a 6-year-old boy was rabid. Aryan Gavali was headed to school in Elmwood Park on Wednesday when the raccoon ran across the street,…

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roof exclusion trap

What is Exclusion Trapping?

What is exclusion trapping? Exclusion trapping is a type of live trapping where an animal is trapped at its point of entry into a structure. It is opposed to ground trapping, where a baited trap is simply placed on the open ground in hopes that the target animal will go into it. Exclusion trapping has several benefits: As the trap is set up so the target animal has to go through it, it does not require the use of bait that has to be replenished. In situations where there may be more than one animal in the vicinity (squirrels, for example), it also ensures that we are trapping the target animal and no other. It is ideal for situations where the animal is actually living in your roof or chimney. As we will see, it is also tremendously versatile. Examples of Exclusion Trapping Let’s take a look at some examples…

roof exclusion trap
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Signs of A Raccoon in the Attic

It is very common to get calls for raccoon getting into attics, especially during the Spring when pregnant coon mothers are looking for warm, safe places to give birth to their pups. How common? I’d say we probably are pulling a raccoon out of an attic two or three times per week, sometimes more. The interesting thing is a lot of people don’t even realize that the problem they are experiencing is a raccoon; this happened last week on a raccoon removal in Canton, MI. we were working on. It started out innocently enough as a bird job. A woman called and stated that she had birds in her attic. She stated that she knew it was birds because she heard them chirping and could also hear their wings brushing against the ceiling and walls. This is common enough, but I began to sense that something was up when she…

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Zombie Raccoons Overrun Texas!

“There is a raccoon stumbling around in my yard. It looks drunk.” This is a frequent call we get here at Creature Control. It can be very alarming to wake up in the morning and see a strange looking raccoon or skunk stumbling around the yard, apparently drunk and not afraid of humans. People often assume these animals are rabid, but more often than not this activity is caused by a disease called distemper, which we have written about elsewhere. One small town in Texas has been overrun with distempered coons, which witnesses are describing as “zombie raccoons.” White Rock Lake, outside Plano, has reported over 250 raccoons dead or dying raccoons since January, 2013. Seventy distempered coons have been found in Plano, and more in Garland, TX. Nor is it restricted to raccoons; over a dozen distempered foxes have been found in the town of Flower Mound. One animal…

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When Raccoons Attack!

Here at Creature Control we sometimes get inquiries from people asking, “Are raccoons rabid? Will a raccoon bite me?” Usually they see a raccoon out hanging out in their lawn or in a nearby tree and want to know if the presence of the raccoon presents any danger to themselves or their children. If you encounter coons, is there a dangers that the raccoons attack? There is certainly always a danger that raccoons can be rabid, even though it may be remote in any given case. They also carry other diseases, such as Baylisascariasis procyonis and leptospirosis. In general, one should always adopt an attitude of caution with wild animals and keep pets and children away from them because of the possibility of contracting these diseases. However, we tend to forget that the real danger with wild animals isn’t that they are disease-ridden but that they are wild. Even if…

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Distemper in Dallas

People around Dallas, Texas have been noticing an increase in distempered raccoons. Distemper is a highly contagious disease that effects raccoons especially, but may also infect skunks, opossums and even domesticated pets. Dallas animal control specialists report a dramatic increase in calls for removal of distempered raccoons. How can you tell if a raccoon has distemper? Very easily. There are three certain signs that a raccoon is suffering from distemper: 1) The raccoon is out in the open during the day. 2) The raccoon has apparently lost its fear of humans. 3) The raccoon is acting “drunk” or appears to be staggering. If the raccoon is exhibiting these three symptoms, it is certainly distempered. Because distemper causes an animal to lose its fear of humans, distempered raccoons can appear “tame” and present a threat to children, who may think it is alright to go up and pet the animal. Such…

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Ohio Distributes Raccoon Vaccines from the Air

The Ohio Departments of Health and Natural Resources have become so concerned about the potential exposure of residents to rabid animals that they have begun a massive campaign to distribute rabies vaccines by air, according to an article by the Associated Press. Fourteen counties in northeast Ohio are the subject of the massive vaccination drop, which is aimed at reducing the state’s rabid raccoon population. The state has had three confirmed rabid animals in 2011, following upon six confirmed cases in 2010. The raccoon vaccines are contained in a fishmeal that attracts raccoons. Each piece of fishmeal is about the size of a packet of ketchup. Beginning last month, the state is in the process of distributing 762,000 pieces of the vaccine over the effected counties, almost all of it dropped from airplane over areas of high raccoon density. It is yet to be seen whether this unprecedented air drop…

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