Tuesday, 7 August 2012

That Strange Thing Crying? It's a Racoon, Or Why Messing with the Food Chain Presents Problems

We've been bothered by a family of racoons--count 'em, one adult and six young ones--for the last several weeks. They cry at night, they get caught in garbage cans, they generally are a nuisance.

Both the city and the SPCA say that caging and transorting them is neither practical or a permanent solution, that people have just got to stop leaving food out for them, or, worse, feeding them directly.

La Presse had a story on the weekend about obese racoons on Mount Royal, while this video shows a family not at all concerned by tourists taking their pictures. As one of my neighbors (who spent a Saturday night vigil with me, rescuing the beasts from trash cans) points out, they have no predators around here any more, so they just keep multiplying in Malthusian fashion as long as the pickings are good.

There's a lesson there for everyone, I think.

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