Jul 20 2008
Birds are pre-empted by mammals today because…
Early this morning as I drank coffee on the front porch I heard an unusual scrabbling noise at the base of my neighbor’s blue spruce. A raccoon was running up the tree!
Raccoons in the city are no surprise, but you rarely see them during the day.
I didn’t want one to be in that tree because it’s loaded with bird nests so I approached and made my best cat-hissing sound. The coon climbed even higher.
After a while four raccoons — mom and three grown kids — climbed down the tree and ran to the park across the street. There they nosed around for food while Carolina wrens, blue jays and robins announced their every move.
The neighborhood bully, a tom cat, arrived on the scene and showed why a cat hiss scares the coons. He charged straight at them from across the street. The coons’ hair stood up on the backs of their necks and they all reached for a tree to climb. No one moved. The cat stared them down and left.
Later they crossed the street again and hid beneath my car. Why are they so determined to come over here?
They’re aiming for my backyard. They left a mess of pawprints in my bird bath and the water was nearly gone. Thirsty raccoons.
If they reproduce next winter the neighborhood will be overrun.
(photo by Chuck Tague of a raccoon family in Florida. They’re everywhere!)