Friday, April 28, 2006

We have windows...raccoon beware

Sure does change the look around her with windows in place. Next week a coat of paint to make it match the rest of the house and the outside will be fetching...for sure.

Now moving west about ten feet to the deck we have a slight problem. A raccoon has been living under the deck for about 8 years, give or take. He happily hibernates under there only to make an appearance when he smells hamburger from the grill. He waits until the grill is closed up and then makes his way over the top of the grill and helps himself to the drippings. (How do we know? Raccoon tracks of course. And we've occasionally seen him belly up in the bird bath sunning himself in the water believe it or not.) Because the Muffin Man is an avid griller our little raccoon is now somewhat ahem, portly. This is not a big deal to us. Quite frankly he can eat until he explodes for all we care. However, with the new construction there will be a step that will close off the entry/exit at the foot of the decking.

Here was my question to our contractor today. Ugh, what if you build the new step and close off the raccoon while he is under the deck? He could get stuck and die. This is no 2 oz. mouse, folks. If this guy isn't going to be pretty and it might smell for a while too. What should we do? Not worry about little chubs and let him try to claw his way out on the other side by digging ravenously through my azeleas or call an animal trapper to entice him out and then let him free after the decking is closed off. Contractor man says oh no, they don't let them back out. They say they take them to some sanctuary up north but that's probably code for what they really do to them. Ha Ha Ha. Great, I'm thinking. My choices are trapping and risking that he gets the ax from some animal control anti-PETA people or possibly letting him die the slow death..or let's be honest ruin my next back yard bar-b-que.

What would you do? One one hand he has sort of felt like the backyard mascot since we caught him sunning himself in the bird bath a few years ago. On the other hand..he is a raccoon after all and aren't they the most resourceful of resourceful woodland animals? Should I be looking for area rugs for the addition instead?


Traci said...

Buy your own trap. Don't call anybody. We have're welcome to borrow one. We'll meet half way. We catch them all the time around here and then take them to some unknowing neighbors farm and let them go. (Okay, just kidding....we take them to the woods a few miles away.) You don't need to pay someone big bucks...just get your own trap. It's really quite easy. Not that I've ever done it. I have my own Main Muffin Man for that sort of thing!


Traci said...

Let me know if you need to know where to buy a trap (although a mid-day lunch halfway sounds like fun) and I'll ask Scott where they can be purchased.


Anonymous said...

I have a couple resident raccoonies too. I wouldn't want to get rid of them, they're sooo happy where they are at. I feed mine cat food and they just love it. They turn up their noses at anything else. Sounds like this one fancies hamburgers though. I would cook hamburger and put it far away from the deck. Once the coonie is eating the hamburger, board up that area until the step is done. If the coonie wants to stick around, it'll find another place to be.

M3 (Mary-Mia) said...

First, Perrin, your addition looks awesome!!!!

Second, I'd love to have a resident raccoon, so I'd vote for just luring him out from under the decking and then boarding it up. (Don't forget to scan the area with a flashlight to make sure "he" isn't a "she" with a few babies stashed under there.) He'll probably stick around and just find a new place to sleep. Definitely don't call a trapper to get him though, they're just feeding you a pretty line when they say they'll release him somewhere nice.

Traci said...

I have to make sure that you know that I'm talking about a "cage" type of trap. It DOES NOT harm your coon. He goes in for food and then can't get back out. You find him quickly and release him later.

I thought I'd better clarify!


Stephanie said...

Don't know what to do about the racoon, but the addition does look really nice!

Made in China said...

Wow, great addition! I would agree with M3 - lure him out and then board it up.

Good luck!

Kristin said...

Your addition is finished????

I might have to hate you.

re: raccoon... um, aren't they like rabid and kind of mean? i say... trap him and relocate him cuz a dead anything is a surefire way to ruin the fun!