One of the most common critters caught on our camera traps were raccoons. The graph above shows when they were most active in Statesville.
The northern, or common raccoon, Procyon lotor, is an opportunistic omnivore. This simply means that they will eat just about anything. This is one of the adaptations that allows them to be successful. They can descend trees (like in the picture below) because the joints in their hind feet have the ability to rotate 180°. They use their forelimbs to “see” in the dark. In fact, these front hands have four times as many touch receptors than the hind feet.
Raccoons are the most common primary reservoir for the rabies virus. They are also commonly infected with a roundworm which passes eggs through the raccoon feces. This roundworm is a major cause of death in certain rodents.
From our data, raccoons were:
- Present at 22 trap stations
- Found in 852 total photos (185 individual observations)
- Nocturnal 95.14% of the time
You can see below that raccoons do not seem to avoid coyotes in space or in time. One reason could be that raccoons can climb trees. Another reason could be that raccoons are mean, and coyotes know it.