Tuesday, August 07, 2007


We caught a raccoon! We caught a raccoon!

Let me explain.

A few months ago, my neighbor, Steve, told me that I had a groundhog living under my deck. (I knew that already.) He seemed more concerned about it than I was, and offered me a trap to catch it.

"Sure, if you have a trap, I will try to catch it," I offered helpfully.

The trap was one he borrowed from a friend of his. It's a humane trap that resembles a cage with a spring-loaded door. You place a small can of cat food in the cage, and when the animal steps on the pressure plate in the cage, the door swings shut.

I placed the trap next to my deck and proceeded to catch nothing at all. I was about to give the trap back to Steve, when Dan complained about the groundhog eating his tomatoes. It has been a really bad drought here this summer, so the animals have begun eating anything they can to get hydration, including garden tomatoes.

Dan baited the trap with a cheese cracker and a half eaten tomato and set it among his tomato plants.

Today, I get a call at work from an excited Becky. "We caught a raccoon! Dan has a raccoon in the trap!"

"Take a picture! Take a picture!" I screamed at her.

"No, Dan's already about to leave with the raccoon."

"JESUS, Honey! How many times do we catch a raccoon? Go stop him! Go take a freakin' picture!"

So she did.

This fella was not happy about being captured. Dan had to figure out how to let the hissing and spitting raccoon out of the cage without getting bitten or scratched. In the end, he released the raccoon several miles from his house, and the trap is now safely rebaited and waiting... waiting... waiting...

Hmmm, I wonder what raccoon sausage tastes like?


Barry said...

That is so cool!! Great picture, seems to be posing.

I wish I could get a fox picture like that.

JamesF said...

Scott: It has been a really bad drought here this summer, so the animals have begun eating anything they can to get hydration, including garden tomatoes.

This may be a stupid question, but if he's eating the tomatoes only to get some liquid, why not leave out a bowl of water?

Scott said...

James: Mainly because we don't want to encourage animals to come into our yards. We're trying to get rid of them. Hence the cage.

Barry: Becky will admit that the photo, though beautifully rendered, was absolutely luck. The animal was moving around a lot, and the auto-focus caught him just perfectly! It really is a great photo!

Mom said...

Poor raccoon! He looks terrified. What if it is a mama & has babies? I used to feed all of the critters in Ohio. If they ran out of food,they would come to the family room doors & look in, if they didn't see me, they would stand on their hind legs & look in the windows until I noticed them & took food out to the feeders. They never really bothered anything once I started putting a feeder out for them.

Dennis said...

Be careful, about moving wildlife. There are all sorts of state laws about trapping and relocation wildlife without a license.

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