Raccoons are very common in the United States, and they can be found in almost every neighborhood. These wild animals can cause a lot of damage to your home and property.
If you have raccoons on your property, you will need to take steps to get rid of them as quickly as possible. You will also want to make sure that they don’t come back after you have removed them from your home or yard.
The first step in getting rid of raccoons is to identify whether or not they are actually living on your property. If you see any signs of raccoon activity, then it is likely that you have raccoons living near your home or business.
One of the most common signs of raccoons living nearby are hearing raccoon sounds. In today’s article, we are going to talk about how to identify raccoon sounds along with other signs of raccoons living on our property.
But before we begin, let’s talk about what you should know about raccoons.
What You Should Know About Raccoons
Raccoons are nocturnal and are common in both urban and suburban areas.
Raccoons are common urban and suburban animals, but they can also be found in the wild. Raccoons are omnivores and will eat anything from insects to nuts, berries, and other fruits. They have a tendency to raid garbage cans and compost piles, so they can sometimes become pests. Worse, raccoons can sometimes choose your attic, basement, shed, or crawlspace as a place to nest with their young, causing serious damage to your home and structure and even leading to health risks for you and your family.
Though raccoons are intelligent and can be entertaining to watch, they can also be dangerous. In fact, raccoons are known to carry a number of serious diseases like rabies
Though raccoons are cute, intelligent, and even entertaining to watch, they can also be dangerous. In fact, wild raccoons are known to carry a number of serious diseases like rabies and Leptospirosis. Raccoons can also spread other bacterial diseases like E. Coli and Salmonella, and spread parasites like roundworms, fleas, and ticks.
The most common way that people contract diseases from raccoons is by coming into contact with their feces or urine, though being bitten or scratched by a raccoon can also lead to disease. For this reason, if you do see a raccoon in your yard or on your property, it’s important to keep your distance and take measures to get rid of them as quickly as possible.
Along with posing a risk to your health and the health of loved ones and pets, raccoons can also be destructive.
In fact, raccoons are notorious for their intelligence, adaptability, and physical dexterity. These qualities have made them a nuisance to homeowners in many parts of the world, not just the United States. A raccoon’s natural curiosity often leads it to explore your home, resulting in damage to property. Raccoons may also be destructive if they find that your house provides easy access to food sources or shelter from the elements and from predators.
With all that said, raccoons are generally not aggressive toward humans, although they can be if they feel threatened or cornered. Their most common defense is to hiss, growl and lunge at people, which we’ll talk more about below when we discuss raccoon sounds.
Raccoons are also nocturnal, meaning they’re active at night. They normally spend their days sleeping in tree hollows or other secluded spots. This can make them difficult to identify. Their diet consists mainly of insects, fish, birds, and small mammals but they will also eat fruits if they find any available in their habitat.
Top Reasons Why Raccoons Are Near Your Property
Raccoons are attracted to food sources and shelter.
If you think you’re hearing raccoon sounds but you’re not sure, there are a few things to consider. One of the most important factors to consider is whether or not our property is ideal for a raccoon or a raccoon family.
Raccoons are attracted to human dwellings because they provide them shelter from the elements and predators. Human dwellings can also provide an abundance of food and water and a place to rest at night.
If you’re providing an ideal food source for raccoons, then it’s no wonder you are hearing raccoon sounds at night. A raccoon’s diet consists mainly of insects, small mammals, and fruits. A raccoon will eat almost anything that fits into its mouth including nuts, bird eggs, and carrion. If there is no other source of food available, a raccoon may look for food inside homes where it comes across pet food dishes or trash cans containing delicious morsels like meats or sweets.
You may be unwittingly attracting raccoons to your home or property by leaving food sources out for them to feed on. Common food sources for raccoons could include improperly stored garbage, pet food, and even bird seed, or suet. You may not realize that you’re inviting this wild animal into your yard, but they are crafty creatures, and can find ways to access them.
Raccoons also enjoy climbing trees which are commonly found near homes and businesses in urban areas. Climbing trees allow them access to bird nests where they can feast on eggs or chicks as well as branches that provide shelter from predators while they sleep during the day.
Raccoon Sounds – What Does A Raccoon Sound Like?
Raccoons can make over 200 different sounds.
On average, it has been found that raccoons make at least 200 different kinds of raccoon sounds that they use to communicate with one another. Some of the most common raccoon sounds include barking, growling, chittering, screaming, screeching, whistling, and hissing. Let’s take a look at the variety of raccoon sounds you might hear if you have a raccoon on your property and what these sounds actually mean.
Barking And Growling
Raccoons bark and growl to communicate with one another. This sound is used to warn other raccoons of danger or it can be used to show dominance over other animals.
The bark is a high-pitched sound that resembles the barking of a dog. When a raccoon barks, it will usually do so at night or in the early morning hours. The barking sound is often heard when a mother raccoon is trying to protect her young from predators such as owls and coyotes.
The growl is much lower pitched than the bark and it sounds like a loud purr or snarl. The growl is used by adult raccoons when they are fighting over territory or food sources with other members of their species. It can also be used when they are trying to show dominance over another animal in their environments such as dogs or other cats.
Sometimes these growls are to express territorial warnings while other times growling raccoon sounds express stress or fear. Growling can also be the first sound raccoons make before they initiate a fight with other raccoons. Growling can also be used to express heightened excitement.
Chittering Or Chattering
Another common sound made by a raccoon is called chittering. This is a high-pitched noise that’s made by both males and females.
Chittering can be used as an alarm call, or as a greeting when two raccoons meet. It can also be used to get the attention of another raccoon if they’re out of sight or asleep.
Another sound that you might hear from your raccoon is called chatter-chatter or chuckling. This is similar to chittering but it has more inflection at the end of the call and it sounds more like laughter than an alarm call does. A mother raccoon will often chitter-chatter at her kits in order to relax or soothe them. And here is a fun note about mother raccoons and kits. Did you know that mother raccoons are able to identify their individual raccoon offspring by the unique sounds of their voices?
Screaming and Screetching
Screaming and screeching raccoon sounds are most often sounds that raccoons use to vocalize danger nearby, like that of a predator. Raccoons are commonly seen as urban pests, but they also live abundantly in forests and woodlands.
There, they are preyed upon by a wide variety of predators including wolves, bears, foxes, coyotes, owls, and hawks. And even in the city, raccoons are not safe. They may face predators like dogs and even humans.
Whistling And HIssing
Raccoon hissing and whistling are more subtle forms of communication that may be used prior to an attack or in an attempt to scare off intruders. This type of vocalization is usually associated with fear or anxiety but can also be used as part of play behavior between two young raccoons who are playing together.
Like many raccoon sounds, these whistling and hissing sounds are also defense mechanisms that enable raccoons to scare off predators or intruders. Raccoons also use these sounds when they are injured or sick.
Other Common Signs A Raccoon Is Nearby
Raccoons are not only noisy, but they also make messes everywhere they go.
Along with being noisy, raccoons can also be messy. This means that although they are nocturnal and therefore most active at night, they still leave behind plenty of clues that they have been on your property.
If you see tracks in your yard or around your home, there’s a good chance that you have a raccoon problem. Raccoon tracks are easily distinguishable from other types of animal tracks.
Raccoons have five toes on their front feet and four toes on their rear feet. Their tracks resemble those of small human hands. The hind foot is longer than the front foot, with the track being about two inches long by one inch wide. You can also see four pads on both the front and back feet of raccoons.
Raccoons are common year-round, so you may see raccoon tracks in the snow or mud. You may also see signs of scratching and digging where raccoons have been lingering.
Raccoons often leave scat behind when they are feeding in an area for an extended period of time. Raccoon scat often looks like black pellets that have been rolled into a ball shape and contain seeds and other plant matter from their diet.
The scat has also been described as having an odor that is musky or fishy. You may also notice scat near your trash cans or compost pile if there is a raccoon living near these locations.
Scratching Sounds Around The Home At Night
If you hear scratching sounds around your home at night, there’s a good chance that you’ve got a raccoon living nearby. Raccoons often spend their days sleeping in trees or other high places and then descend at night to go looking for food. However, at night raccoons become active and often roam in groups looking for food.
If raccoons are scratching around your home or trying to get in, listen for sounds that sound like something is being dragged across the side of your house or on top of your roof. You may also hear grunting and snorting noises, as well as the sound of an animal eating garbage or pet food left outside overnight.
Waking To Messes Near Outdoor Garbage Bins Or In Garages And Sheds
Raccoons are attracted to food sources like garbage bins and pet food bowls left outside overnight. If you notice messes near these areas consistently, it’s likely you have a raccoon infestation on your hands.
Raccoons will often open garbage cans by tearing off their lids in order to access the food inside them. You may notice torn-up trash bags as well as torn-off lids if you have raccoons living near your home.
Missing Pet Food That Has Been Left Out Overnight
Raccoons are opportunistic feeders and have a vast diet that consists of bird seed, carrion, fruits, vegetables, garbage, insects, fish, and more. In fact, these animals will eat whatever they can find and will gladly steal your pet’s food if given the opportunity.
If you leave pet food out for your dog or cat overnight and notice that it is missing in the morning, then it is very possible you have a raccoon on your hands.
Actually Seeing A Raccoon or Raccoon Family Near Your Property
Raccoons are nocturnal animals, but they do come out during the day. If you see a raccoon during the day, it may be ill or injured. However, spotting a raccoon during the day could also mean that there is a den nearby. If conditions are right, it’s not uncommon for raccoons to take over an area of your property and use it as their own den.
Unusual Vocalizations At Night
Along with leaving messes behind and making strange scratching noises, one of the most common signs of a raccoon or raccoon family on your property is going to be raccoon sounds. As we mentioned above, raccoons make about 200 different sounds and vocalizations that they use to communicate with one another.
These sounds can range from barking and growling to chittering, hissing, screeching, and even screaming.
While there are many types of animals that make unique sounds at night, raccoon sounds are easy to distinguish when you put them together with other common signs of raccoons nearby.
How To Get Rid Of Raccoons On Your Property – Best Methods and Tips
Getting rid of raccoons can be tricky and it may require help from a professional.
Knowing how to identify raccoon sounds is an important step in identifying if you truly have raccoons living on your property. As we now know, raccoons are a common pest in many parts of the country. They can be quite destructive, causing damage to your home, yard, and garden. They can even pose a risk to humans by carrying diseases such as rabies. Learning how to get rid of raccoons on your property is essential for protecting yourself and your family from these pests.
Luckily, there are several different methods available for removing raccoons from your property. It is important that you choose the right method based on the type of raccoon infestation you have and the size of the problem that you are facing.
The best way to get rid of raccoons is to prevent them from using your property in the first place, which we will talk about further down.
However, if you already have raccoons, there are some steps you can take to get rid of them once you have identified raccoon sounds and signs.
Get rid of their food sources –
The first step in getting rid of raccoons once you know what a raccoon sounds like is to remove their food sources. Keep all trash containers tightly sealed, especially at night when raccoons are most active. Clean up any spilled food promptly, as well as pet waste that may attract raccoons or other animals to your yard.
Make your home less attractive to them using light, sound, and smell deterrents –
If you have a raccoon problem around your home, try using light, sound, and smell deterrents to discourage them from returning. For example, try keeping your yard well-lit at night using bright outdoor lights that shine on the ground around your home’s perimeter. This will make it more difficult for raccoons to find food without being seen themselves by predators such as hawks or coyotes and owls who hunt at night as well.
You can also use motion-activated sprinklers to scare unwanted raccoons and other nocturnal pests away, as well as ultrasonic sound repellents and scent repellents.
Consider trapping and relocating raccoons –
If you have raccoons nesting inside your home or on your property, then trapping them using a live catch-and-release trap is probably your best option for removing them.
To do this, you will need a cage trap which you can purchase from any local hardware store or online retailer. The design of these traps comes in different sizes so make sure that you choose one that’s suitable for the number of raccoons present on your property. Once you’ve caught them, cover the trap with a towel and transport the raccoons to an area where there aren’t any humans living nearby before releasing them.
Before you do opt to trap and relocate raccoons, be sure that you are transporting mothers with all of their young and that you are up to date with local laws in your county. Keep in mind that it is not always legal to trap and relocate wild animals without a proper license or permit.
Contact a professional for help –
If you’re not confident in removing raccoons on your own, it may be best not to attempt this yourself and to contact a professional. This is especially true if you discover a mother raccoon and her kits on your property or if you feel the raccoon problem you have identified after learning what a raccoon sounds like is much larger than you can handle.
But before you decide which method for raccoon removal is right for you, let’s take a look at a few products recommended by experts for raccoon removal and prevention.
PHIMINNEX Ultrasonic Animal Repellent With Flashing LED Lights
The PHIMINNEX Ultrasonic Animal Repellent With Flashing LED Lights is an ultrasonic animal repellent that uses sound to repel unwanted pests like raccoons and other animals. This device works by emitting high-frequency sound waves that are undetectable by humans but which are extremely annoying to animals.
Bonide Repels All Animal Repellent Granules
Bonide Repels All Animal Repellent Granules is a product that works to repel animals from your yard. This product can be used to repel raccoons and deer. It is also designed to repel other types of animals such as rabbits, squirrels, and more.
The repellent granules are a granule product that comes in a bag and you simply scatter the granules around your yard. The granules are easy to use and the instructions are included in the package. Each bag contains one pound of repellent granules which will cover up to 1,000 square feet of area.
The Bonide Repels All Animal Repellent Granules contain garlic oil as well as other ingredients that help repel these animals from your yard. The product is also completely safe to use around children and pets.
OxGord Live Animal Trap
The OxGord Live Animal Trap is a humane raccoon trap designed to catch raccoons and other medium-sized animals without harming them. The trap comes with a durable, weatherproof steel cage that can be placed in an area where you’ve seen raccoons, or near your home in case, they are already living nearby.
The trap door is easy to open and close, and the trap comes with a one-year warranty. The OxGord Live Animal Trap can be used to catch raccoons, opossums, and other small- to medium-sized animals such as skunks and squirrels.
Now That You Know What A Raccoon Sounds Like, Let’s Talk About How To Prevent Them
Preventing raccoons means taking a number of steps.
Raccoons are very smart and adaptable animals, which is one of the many reasons they can be such a nuisance to homeowners. These little creatures can open doors, break into attics and crawlspaces, and destroy your garden.
Raccoons are also great climbers and can climb trees very easily. They have sharp claws that not only help them climb but also dig holes in the ground. Raccoons have a very good sense of smell which helps them find food sources such as garbage cans and pet food bowls, which means your property could easily become a target.
We also know now that raccoons can be dangerous if they become aggressive or start showing signs of rabies. If you have raccoons on your property or have identified raccoon sounds, it’s important to take steps to prevent them from getting too close to your home.
Below are some tips on how to prevent raccoons:
- Keep trash cans tightly closed and remove any food waste immediately after meals. This includes pet food left outside
- Make sure that all pet food is stored in an area where raccoons cannot access it, like inside an airtight container or inside your home
- Remove any bird feeders from your yard or garden. If you do not want to lose birds then make sure that there is no way for raccoons to access them. You can also deter raccoons and other pests from bird feeders by adding cayenne pepper to the bird seed. Birds will not be affected by the spice but mammals like raccoons and squirrels will be deterred.
- Keep your yard and property well-kept and organized. Remove debris and clutter so raccoons have fewer areas available to hide, and be sure to trim back tree branches that may be too close to your roof, keep bushes trimmed, and protect vegetable gardens and fruit trees with animal-repellent fencing.
And remember, just because you have identified raccoon sounds near your property does not mean raccoons have chosen your property as a place to live. In fact, raccoons are very active in most regions throughout the United States, so hearing raccoon sounds is not uncommon.
The best way to ensure that raccoons stay away from your property, however, is to follow the above tips and tricks listed by our experts.
Best of luck and thanks for reading!
Jack founded our blog after two decades of working in the pest control industry. His vast experience dealing with a wide array of pests allows him to diagnose issues quickly and get to the heart of pest problems quickly and effectively. He has serviced more than 2,000 homes over his career and there is hardly any pest situation that he has not seen before.