Raccoons’ most distinctive features are its extremely dexterous front paws which act like human hands and the raccoon’s facial mask. The body weight can vary significantly, but is usually around 10-20 pounds. Advanced Wildlife Control Inc. biggest raccoon weighed in at well over 40 pounds!
Raccoons in southeastern Wisconsin mate in late January-February. The female raccoon hides her babies and “nest” from the male raccoon, because he would likely kill the babies to get the female back into heat! The gestation period of a raccoon is usually around 60-65 days. Baby raccoons open their eyes in about 23 days after birth. The average litter size for raccoons born in Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Waukesha, and Washington Counties is about 4 raccoons.
Raccoons are scavengers and will eat just about anything although some of their favorite foods are fish, bird eggs, and berries when abundant. They also have been known to feed in your garbage cans.
Female raccoons love to have their babies in your fireplace and they won’t leave if you just turn music on at the bottom of the flue. The life expectancy of a raccoon is only 4 years! Raccoons have been considered pets in other states, although when the female goes into heat she often becomes more aggressive. We catch over 1,000 raccoons per year in southeastern Wisconsin.