Warm weather means spending time outdoors, cookouts, parties, etc. When you think of pests that can interfere with your festivities, flying bugs are the first thing that come to mind, but furry critters can also be problem. Raccoons can absolutely be drawn to cookouts and barbecues. Here’s why and how to avoid it.
What Attracts Raccoons?
Raccoons are omnivores and opportunistic feeders. That means they’ll eat virtually anything, and any new, reliable food source quickly becomes their favorite. Leave food outside for your dog or cat? A raccoon will eat that. Fruit or nuts that have fallen to the ground from trees on your property? Definitely. Items from your vegetable garden? Of course. Unsecured trashcan lids? That’s a daily feast for raccoons.
If a steady food source like those listed has already attracted raccoons to your area, they could be drawn by the smell of your cooking when you barbecue. While raccoons are primarily nocturnal, healthy ones can be out and about during the daytime.
In fact, they’ll commonly come out in the daytime because:
1. Something frightened them out of their den
2. Raising babies tends to throw off a mother raccoon’s schedule
3. A food source has been found that involves gathering it in the daytime. For example, if your neighbor puts out fresh trash around lunchtime and leaves their trash can lids loose, that’s practically inviting raccoons to pop by in the day time
Once raccoons are in the habit of being active during the day or realize that they’ll find steady food during the day, checking out your BBQ is the next logical step. If you don’t want raccoons to become uninvited guests at your cookout, listen to the advice below.
How to Deter Raccoons
- Don’t leave food for your dog or cat outside
- Don’t leave fallen fruit or nuts on the ground and sweep up acorns
- If you have a vegetable garden, cover it with chicken wire to discourage raccoons from raiding it
- Secure trash can lids with bungee cords or keep in a closed bin holder
- Sprinkle a mix of cayenne pepper and water over areas, like trash, that might be attracting raccoons
Fun Facts About Raccoons
- The word “raccoon” derives from the Algonquin tribe’s term for “one who scratches with his hands”
- Raccoons make 13 different sounds
- Raccoons are flat-footed when they walk like humans
- Raccoons in labs have been known to pick the locks on their cages
- Raccoon tracks look so much like opossum tracks they’re frequently confused
Let Arrow Handle Raccoons
The best way to deal with a raccoon is to call in a professional like Arrow Exterminating. The sooner you contact us then the sooner we can help you live in a critter-free environment. To get started, contact Arrow Exterminating today.