animal companions


I thought the squirrels were having a war in our backyard; lots of screeching and squawking and thrashing around. Turns out that all the racket is actually due to an unruly family of raccoons that decided to live under our back porch/wheelchair ramp. They are noisy buggers. Sounds like they’re working on a big project under there when they aren’t busy climbing a tree to get up on the roof and tear off shingles.

I called county animal control and their recording said that the city has its own animal control, otherwise known as the animal shelter. I called the city animal shelter and the recording said they don’t deal with wildlife, and referred me to Fish and Wildlife. Fish and Wildlife referred me to Homeland Security. Not really. Fish and Wildlife said that they won’t help me either, but gave the following suggestions:

  1. Rent a trap. Catch the raccoons and kill them. They used the word “euthanize” instead of kill. I don’t have any raccoon euthanization experience. I could take a cue from Jon Ronson’s Men Who Stare at Goats book and stare at the trapped raccoon, willing it to die with psychic power.
  2. Another idea was to put metal flashing around the base of the tree so the raccoons are unable to climb it, and then put ammonia-soaked rags in their nesting area. I believe that if you find a raccoon that enjoys the smell of ammonia, you should expose the animal to high-intensity gamma rays.
  3. A third option was to call a company that specializes in animal removal. “That can be very costly,” said the friendly Fish and Wildlife representative.
  4. The Fish/Wildlife person also said that raccoons don’t like loud noises. I wonder if the neighbors would mind high-decibel Metallica 24/7 in the backyard?

Exit light
Enter night
Take my hand
We’re off to never never-land


One thought on “animal companions

  1. younger green

    Reminded me of the night the racoons took baby squirrels out of a nest one by one right outside our bedroom window. The cries of each of the babies would suddenly stop. Not a pleasant night. Go with the ammonia.

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