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Thread: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

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    A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    We finished our build 2 1/2 months ago and suddenly a raccoon has decided to drop by at night and tear up our new sod. It's been rolling up sections and "scoring" other sections. I would have thought the new lawn would be deeply rooted in the ground by now but I guess not. I also wonder if the recent treatment we've been using to get rid of our 2 female dogs' spots on the new lawn is what suddenly attracted the raccoon (it's called Dog Spot Solution). The old ugly St. Augustine was a lot less of a headache, but we wanted pretty sod to match our pretty new pool.

    Anyhow, we bought a trap but so far the raccoon is not falling for it. Any suggestions?

    Thanks,
    Julie
    http://<a href="http://s612.photobuc...6hh.jpg"/></a>

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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Raccoons can be extremely dangerous as they have razor sharp front claws. Make sure you keep your dogs inside at night as a raccoon can easily kill even a large sized dog.

    If you're using a Have-A-Heart trap, they're useless in my opinion. I never got one animal with those. I finally got fed up with the critters in my yard and I switched to deadly force traps. Over 12 confirmed kills this past summer. There are lethal trapping methods for raccoons if you're willing to use them (similar to bear traps). I have no problem with lethal force when it comes to unwanted pests, but I understand it if you don't feel the same way or you prefer to trap & release.

    Have you called animal control in your area? They may have options for how to trap or deter them.

    Sorry to hear about your nice sod.


    Matt
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    You know... I don't think it will weigh heavy on me if the raccoon doesn't survive its next wild party in my backyard. But I wouldn't be able to see it suffer, so I'd have to take that into consideration. How many of your trapped critters were raccoons? I ask because I wonder if one goes away and another comes to take its place. Yes, it's one of those humane traps. I was hoping for a better outcome with it. I did speak to the wild life expert at the Humane Society and she had ridiculous "solutions" such as using a shake can to scare it off (while I'm sleeping in the middle of the night!), hanging mylar reflective strips, installing a motion light which we already have -- just stupid stuff. I was also hoping the Humane Society would relocate the pest very far away so it doesn't come back if we catch it, but I bet they won't. Do exterminators take care of raccoons, I wonder?

    Yes, the dogs are indoor dogs so no worries about an encounter, thank goodness. I was shocked at how sharp the raccoon's claws must be to slice lines in our lawn so cleanly and easily. I've been referring to it as Edward Scissorhands. Definitely don't want my dogs to run into it.

    Thanks.
    Completed new pool & spa in Pasadena, CA Oct 2015
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Here in the desert, my biggest kills have been ground squirrels, pack-rats and a road runner (they are evil, nasty little birds despite what you might remember from the cartoons). We don't really get raccoons around here. Back in my youth when I lived in NY, we had visitations from a raccoon throwing over our trash cans and making a mess of our yard. My dad used a bear-trap device and killed it. No other raccoons came to take it's place (I think they're solitary creatures).

    No kill trap is perfect. Of the 12 kills this past summer, one of the squirrels required me to finish it off with a shovel. It's not pleasant, but it's necessary. A kill trap could easily ensnare a raccoon and not kill it right away. In that case, someone would have to be brave enough to finish it off with a shovel (a .22 would be quicker and easier but I'd bet Pasadena probably has regulations against discharging a rifle within the city limits).

    You could certainly call around to exterminators. They may have a variety of trapping methods that can work but I have no idea how much they'd charge you....probably less than replacing rolls of beautiful sod.....

    Good luck,

    Matt
    Matt
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Coons are easy to trap in a live trap. I use sardines if there no cats around, and Doritos if cats are a possibility. Spread a few on the ground to get them started and they'll go inside to get the rest.

    Two years ago I caught 7 coons in 9 days.

    Coons can be pretty aggressive. If you plan to transport them, a heavy leather glove is good.
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    .22 pistol will do the trick!
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    JoyfulNoise's Avatar
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnT View Post
    Coons are easy to trap in a live trap. I use sardines if there no cats around, and Doritos if cats are a possibility. Spread a few on the ground to get them started and they'll go inside to get the rest..
    Doritos, huh...Regular, Cool Ranch, Zesty Nacho, Spicy Flamas?

    It always amazes me what these critter will eat. I use peanut butter and apple chips to lure the ground squirrels to the trap but my neighbor swears gummy bears work the best.


    Matt
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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    How big is your trap? It has to be big enough so a 20 or lbs "dog" can fit in it.

    Sardines work great for a coon as does wet cat food.

    No one will take them off to relocate around here. We have a truck and move them deeper into the woods behind us.

    What about a motion activated sprinkler? I have heard of it working on deer. I don't know it it will work on coons.

    Your pictures did not work. I would really like to see them as it MAY be armadillos doing the digging. I can tell from the dig marks. Coons do not really mess with lawns. Armadillos will mess up a whole yard quick! they are looking for grubs.

    The hole will look like someone used a spade at an angle.

    Kim
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Bear in mind that raccoons are very prone to having rabies, too. Cute, but potentially nothing but serious trouble.....

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Quote Originally Posted by JoyfulNoise View Post
    Doritos, huh...Regular, Cool Ranch, Zesty Nacho, Spicy Flamas?

    It always amazes me what these critter will eat. I use peanut butter and apple chips to lure the ground squirrels to the trap but my neighbor swears gummy bears work the best.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk,16k gal SWG pool (All Pentair), QuadDE100 Filter, Taylor K-2006
    I've used regular and ranch. Cat isn't interested in them and a bag lasts forever.

    Several years ago I caught the neighbor's cat in my barn when I was trying to catch a possum. He figured out he could get a free sardine meal in exchange for a night in the trap and he came back every night. That's when I figured out how well the Doritos work.
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    LOL, John. Smart cat. I'll try the sardine approach and see if it makes a difference. He hasn't come around the past 2 nights so I'm wondering if another neighbor got him. Fingers crossed!

    Kim, I don't think we have armadillos in Southern California, but I could be wrong. I don't know why I'm having such a hard time with photobucket all of a sudden, but I think I got it now. The 1st pic shows what it looks like after we've put all the flaps back in their place. There are several "flaps" all over the backyard.

    Tanner - My brother, who has a ton of property and no neighbors close by, said the same thing. But that won't work where we live since we live in a busy city and we butt up to neighbors on all 3 sides of our home. Plus it's illegal and I bet we'd have SWAT descend upon us so fast our heads would spin (not to mention land in jail over a raccoon! Probably just want the raccoon wants!). However, we are getting a BB Gun and if I get mad enough I will likely give it a go. If it scares him off to the point that he's afraid to return, then that would be a success.

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    Completed new pool & spa in Pasadena, CA Oct 2015
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    Mod Squad kimkats's Avatar
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    The pics worked! It does not look like dillo digging. I wonder what the coon is looking for IN your grass?

    I hope he has gone bye-bye.

    Kim
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    We had an issue with skunks digging for grubs. Grubex took care of that or you can use fox urine from a sporting goods store.


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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Thanks, Shock11. I'll look into those options.
    Completed new pool & spa in Pasadena, CA Oct 2015
    14' x 25', raised bond beam for water feature
    deck jet, Baja step, 7'x7' spa
    Pentair equip, saltwater, EasyTouch remote system

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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    If you actually get a sighting of the raccoon and don't want to resort to using a gun in case the neighbors have a problem with that, I've read that pepper spray is an effective deterrent for bears. If it works for bears, I'd bet it would make a raccoon think twice about coming around again.
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    Re: A raccoon is tearing up our new landscape

    Here in PA the gentleman that trapped a few raccoons for us used chicken wing bones to lure them in. It worked well!
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