Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Deterrents For Raccoons Reviewed

When Raccoons Get On Your Last Nerve

raccoon
Raccoon Image From Pixabay.com
Let's review some deterrents for raccoons, today. Shall we? One might look at the image to the left and think that a raccoon is such a cute little critter. Well, I guess there is a cuteness about that face but there is a reason they have that little bandit mask over those eyes! As cute as they might be, you do want to discourage them from visiting your yard and garden as much as possible. 

Currently, my husband and I have been battling with a mother raccoon and her ingenuous ways of finding food to eat in our backyard. It isn't the first year but we are hoping that it will be the last. I understand that she probably has young ones to feed but she needs to find her meals somewhere else. It was one thing when she or one of her friends came and robbed the bird feeders of the seeds. It is totally another thing when she discovered my hummingbird feeders and figured out how to shimmy up the skinny little pole and tip the feeder over for the sweet drink inside. What a mess! Not to mention she leaves nothing for the hummingbirds to drink. The ants love her antics because they can come swarm the sugar water that spilled on the ground. Enough, I say, enough!

In the past, I tried an ammonia deterrent. It was simple but honestly not that effective. The premise for it is that you soak a rag in ammonia, place it in a coffee can that you have punched holes in and sit it where you want to keep the raccoons away. It worked for about 2 days and then no matter how often I replaced the ammonia soaked rag; Ms. Raccoon was up to her antics again. 

I have read that raccoons do not like hot peppers. So, I have considered leaving some hot pepper suet at the base of my hummingbird feeder. I worry that this deterrent might harm other creatures that may visit the yard, though. It isn't supposed to harm birds but what about cats or dogs who might get into it? 

I also saw that they make raccoon baffles that sort of work like a squirrel deterrent. That might work except those darn raccoons are pretty smart and I worry that they might figure out how to get around the baffle by jumping above it. 

The premise of the baffle for raccoons is that it fits at the base of your feeder. I don't know if it works or not. I can see it would be difficult to get onto my pole but maybe not all poles. It would certainly be worth a try for many people.

So, you may be wondering what is my plan for this year? It turned out to be pretty simple, actually. Each evening around dusk I plan to just bring my feeder into the house. Ms. Raccoon can't get into it if it is inside the house. Her babies won't bother it nor will any of her friends. Raccoons are pretty clever but there isn't any way that they can figure out how to open a locked door and I seriously doubt that they would break the glass so I think I have come up with the best deterrent of all. If there is nothing out there for her to get into, she will finally decide to move on to the next victims.

I wish Ms. Raccoon, her babies and her friends no harm. I just do not want her or any of them coming to my yard to drink the sweet nectar left for the hummingbirds or anything else for that matter. Since I am pretty sure that Ms. Raccoon can't read, instead of a sign saying that she is not welcome; I just will not put out anything that she can feed on at night. A silent message, if you will, to go away.



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4 comments:

  1. We do love our hummingbird feeders, but they definitely attract more than hummingbirds. I no longer put mine out because of the wasps they attract. We need our animals and insects to learn to read posted signs like "reserved for the hummingbirds". Bringing the hummingbird feeder in every night probably is the only way to keep Mrs. Raccoon from messing with it.

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  2. Sounds like a plan, Beverly. We had a problem with raccoons invading our garbage can when we lived in a house with woods behind us. We tried everything. The lid fit tight, but they managed to pry it off every time. We began to stack bricks on top of the lid, but they just pushed them off. Finally I called the university in our town and talked to someone who had a solution. We were told that breads and chicken/turkey bones attracted raccoons and if we were to put any of that in the trash can we should sprinkle the top with Cayenne pepper because it bothered the noses of raccoons. It worked! I don't know about outside areas and hummingbird feeders, but the garbage can was the perfect place as it was a covered area only raccoons would get into. Good luck with your solution.

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  3. I was researching squirrel deterrents recently and saw the baffle for the raccoons which seemed to have a fairly good success rate. But simply getting rid of the food source during the times of day the mama raccoon is out seems to be the simplest and best idea. I hope doing so continues to work for you. Hope the raccoons don't find their way to our yard and our feeders!

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  4. Your solution should work unless you have pet doors. My aunt once had a raccoon enter her house using a door meant for her cat.

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