Pages

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

They're Lucky They're Cute

Today's photo was taken in the wee hours by my neighbor. He's been having to patch up his yard every morning since a couple of raccoons discovered something delicious under his grass. You can see a bit of their handiwork behind the trap.

Those cute little animals tore my neighbor's lawn to shreds, yet the yards on either side weren't affected. These guys liked one yard and one yard only. My neighbor called the Pasadena Humane Society and rented a humane trap. He also got tips from PHS experts, who thought the problem might have to do with the fact that he'd recently put down new sod. Apparently, raccoons love the grubs and insects that come with new sod. A raccoon invasion can also have to do with watering lawns at night, which a lot of people are doing now due to our drought watering restrictions.

If you have a problem, check the PHS Wildlife Services page and click on Help With Opossum, Raccoons and Skunks for a .pdf full of useful information.

My neighbor is a nice guy, but he was frustrated after a few days of patching. The title of this post is a direct quote.

Update: The neighbors have caught a second raccoon. There are at least two more. It looks like a single group, not a continuing invasion, so they will catch and remove them all once then (hopefully) it'll be done. The family has named the first two Rocky and Rita.

28 comments:

Cafe Pasadena said...

Thanks for the good information on catching something delicious! It's a good October reminder that I'm overdue for catching & eating macarons and macaroons. I'm lucky they're cute & tasty.

(Skunks?? PDP, who has that problem!)

J.J. in L.A. said...

Just Monday night, mom went out to bring the cat food in because we've had raccoon problems...and one was eating as she walked outside! I even saw one on the washing machine, about a year ago, eating the food she'd brought in (we have an old-fashioned milk door in the service porch). Thank you for this information!

Shell Sherree said...

Aww, they ARE cute, Petrea! I should introduce them to our possums. {LOL, Cafe!!}

Danial said...

beautiful raccoon .

altadenahiker said...

Shell, we have possums here in LA -- only marsupials in the US.

I love watching the raccoons and possums and skunks that prowl around nightly. Great shot -- do you know where they release them P?

Bellis said...

Perhaps they're working for Pasadena Water and Power to discourage us from having lawns?

Petrea said...

Ha ha, Cafe! We have a skunk living somewhere on or near our property, but he or she is welcome and not a problem.

You're welcome, J.J. And yes, raccoons (as my neighbor has discovered) like cat food.

Thanks, Shell. They probably already know our possums. (Opossums, they call 'em around here, but we called them possums in the Midwest.) We always know when they're moving around out back because the neighbor dog objects to them.

It's a beautiful creature indeed, Danial.

I didn't know they were the
only marsupials in the US, Hiker. My neighbor said they'll be released somewhere in the hills. They caught a second one last night and there are more.

If so, Bellis, it might be inefficient but effective.

Turquoise Diaries said...

They are really very cute.. I am glad I dont have a garden, I probably let the whole clan live there :))

Greg Sweet said...

I took this photo at 3 a.m. in my bathroom at the bunkhouse of Adams' Pack Station...

http://www.flickr.com/photos/25873718@N03/3665186521/sizes/o/in/set-72157620640001802/

Bellis said...

Greg, we need a caption competition for that one! I hope they release the whole family in the same place - they will be lost without their brothers, sisters and Mummy. I'm crying already.

Cafe Pasadena said...

Caption: How does this stuff taste?

Linda Dove said...

I'm a sucker for a mask.

Petrea said...

TD you're right to use the word "clan," as this may be a family group.

Caption: "Could ya give a lady some privacy?"

Bellis, I'm putting my trust in the PHS people. Fingers crossed.

Linda, that makes me wonder about the evolutionary reason for that marking. Surely cuteness doesn't hold sway in the woods?

pasadenaadjacent said...

This is the result of Mr V's brilliant idea about how to get around washing the cat's dishes out at night.

not to worry, it was a short lived solution

marley said...

Oh, they are cute. But a pain in the back garden!

J+P said...

Greg Sweet's bathroom companion seems to be saying "Does this evolutionary cul-de-sac make my butt look big?"

Colleen said...

We had the same problem several years ago with new sod, and I solved with a simple trick-- just lift up the sod near where they're going after it and sprinkle some chile powder on the soil. They don't like the taste and smell and will go away.

Petrea said...

PA, you're on fire lately. Funny, funny.

You mean a pain in the behind, Marley?

J. Speakin'a which.

I like the idea, Colleen. Though I must say, having seen the devastation that is my neighbor's lawn, this time it's going to take a whole lot of chili powder.

Jilly said...

This so reminds me of the last time I was with my buddy in Ohio. She had raccoons in the roof and doing a lot of damage. Just like this, she set a trap and caught them, one by one, and then we drove them miles away to another area and just hoped they'd catch up with each other. They are beautiful creatures but do an awful lot of damage.

Thanks so much for the nod re the non-working link on Menton. Now working. Jx

Trish said...

I used to help my gr grammie "shoo" the raccoons off her property when I was a kid with a hose and sprayer...I thought we were commandos!

One client thought they had raccoons--turns out the lawn was being ripped up by the "black chickens"---caught them one day doing the damage. Probably still grubs and they are near enough to the hills the raccoons should be there too---but it was only daytime damage.

But I'll trade you the raccoons for the coyotes and deer in the neighborhood i'm in right now. The coyotes have been howling/yipping at 4-5am...not the usual coyote call all the time, but certainly coyote...the dog, of course, goes insane, barking. I need sleeeeep!

Dina said...

I knew a lady on the outskirts of Chicago who had a feeding station for the coons in her back yard.

They look like masked bandits creeping around. feh

Petrea said...

Thanks, Jilly, I'll pop back over.

Trish: block chickens? You mean brats?

Dina, for a photo of a charming feeding station, click Pasadena Adjacent's link.

Trish said...

blAck chickens...crows.

Virginia said...

Call me an ole grump but raccoons and squirrels are running amok around here and the "bloom is off the rose" in my yard!
V

PS FYI, I know folks that once let them "nibble" in their yards and later had them cause a tremendous amount of damage to their homes.

Petrea said...

He's still trapping. Last night he caught two more raccoons and his own cat.

gate valves said...

poor raccoon...

Lori Lynn said...

Oh, good to know that about watering at night. I'll go find out more, thanks for the link.
LL

Hughes said...

Raccoons can be cute but they sure can are pests..