Raccoon with head sticking out of a hole in a tree.

How To Identify a Raccoon Nest? 

Have you ever seen a raccoon wandering around your yard or neighborhood? Raccoons are known for their masked faces, bushy tails, and curious behavior. They’re excellent climbers and diggers and frequently build nests in trees, attics, crawl spaces, sheds, and decks.

They typically build their nest in preparation for their young and use sticks, leaves, fur, grasses, and other materials to build the nests. Identifying a raccoon nest is vital for homeowners who need to know how to prevent or remove a raccoon from their property.

Key Pest Points:

• Raccoons will typically build a nest to prepare for their young.

• Nests may be found in trees, attics, crawl spaces, sheds, and decks.

• Raccoon dens are built using sticks, leaves, fur, grasses, and other found materials.

What Does a Raccoon Nest Look Like?

A raccoon den or nest is made from leaves, sticks, twigs, and other materials. They are usually constructed in hollow trees or large shrubs but can also be found in attics and decks. Raccoon nests usually have a warm layer of insulation inside, which helps keep the family safe and comfortable during cold winter months.

Raccoons also like to build their nests near water sources so they can easily access food and water. And if it’s a maternal nest, the mother raccoon will line the nest with soft materials like mosses and fur to keep her babies warm.

Where Can You Find a Raccoon Nest?

Finding a raccoon nest can be difficult, as they are typically located in tight, out-of-the-way places. If you’re looking for a raccoon nest, check areas near your property, such as hollow trees, attics, barns, chimneys, sheds, and decks. They are also known to nest in abandoned buildings, rock piles, and other man-made structures.

Raccoons can also be seen in suburban areas with plentiful food sources, such as garbage cans, pet food dishes, bird feeders, and outdoor grills. This is why securing your garbage cans and keeping pet food indoors is crucial.

However, it’s crucial to remember that raccoons are wild animals, and it can be dangerous to try and remove them from their nest. If you find a raccoon nest on your property, it’s best to contact a wildlife removal expert who can safely handle the situation.

Signs of a Raccoon Nest

Apart from seeing the actual nest itself, there are other signs that can help you identify a raccoon den or nesting area. Here are some of the common signs to look out for:

Look for Raccoon Droppings

Raccoon droppings are cylindrical shaped and are usually found near their dens. They may also be located near water sources and other areas where the raccoons have been foraging.

Be cautious when you find raccoon droppings, as they can carry various parasites and diseases. It’s best to wear protective clothing and gloves when handling any droppings, so you don’t come in contact with any potential pathogens.

Learn To Identify Raccoon Tracks

You may also be able to identify raccoons by their tracks. Their tracks look similar to hand prints which can be found in mud, sand, or snow. This is especially helpful if you’ve seen the raccoon on your property, as you can look for its tracks and follow it back to its den. If you need help with identifying raccoon tracks, contact a wildlife expert for help.

Raccoon nibbles a chocolate cookie.

Listen for Raccoon Noises

Since raccoons are primarily nocturnal, they will be active at night. You may be able to identify their presence by listening for any rustling or other noises coming from the den. They also make high-pitched chirping and other vocalizations. So, if you hear any noises coming from your attic or any part of your yard, it’s a good indication that there might be raccoons in the area.

Identifying a raccoon’s nest is an integral part of understanding its behavior. If you find a raccoon den on your property, you should contact a professional wildlife removal expert for advice and assistance in safely relocating the family.

How To Remove a Raccoon Nest 

If a raccoon den is located near your home or garden, removing it as soon as possible is essential. Raccoons can carry parasites and diseases, so removing them from your property is necessary for your and your family’s safety.

Trap the Raccoons Humanely

Trapping the raccoons is the most effective way to remove them from your property. But it’s essential to do this humanely, as raccoons can be dangerous and unpredictable when cornered.

You’ll need to use a live-catch cage trap to catch the raccoon. Make sure the cage is big enough for the raccoons and has no sharp edges that could injure them. You can also use bait to attract them into the trap.

If you manage to catch a raccoon in your trap, make sure you handle it with caution. Wear protective clothing, such as gloves and a mask, to avoid contracting parasites, diseases, or even rabies the animal may be carrying. Also, make sure that the cage is securely closed before attempting to move it.

If a raccoon bites you, seek medical attention immediately and inform the health professional of your contact with the animal.

Raccoon-Proof Your Property

Once all the raccoons have been removed from your property, it’s essential to raccoon-proof your home and garden. This involves removing any possible food sources, such as garbage cans, pet food dishes, and bird feeders. Make sure all of these are securely sealed and placed in an area that is not easily accessible to raccoons.

You should also block off any entry points into your home, such as vents and chimneys. This will help to keep raccoons from entering your house in the future. Finally, trim back any trees or shrubs that could provide raccoons with easy access to your roof or attic.

Use Raccoon Eviction Fluid

Raccoon eviction fluid can be used to help get rid of raccoons from your home. This natural product has a smell and taste that raccoons find unpleasant, so they will avoid the area where it’s been applied. The fluid can be sprayed around the perimeter of your home or garden and in any potential entry points to discourage raccoons from entering.

Raccoon family peeking out of the tree hollow.

Understand the Local Laws

Before attempting to remove raccoons from your property, check the local laws in your area. In some cases, it may only be legal to trap and relocate the animals with a permit. If you need more clarification, contact your local wildlife agency for advice on how to proceed.

Removing raccoons from your property can be a difficult and time-consuming process. Contact a professional wildlife removal expert for help if you’re having trouble removing them.

They will have the expertise and equipment necessary to remove the raccoons from your home or garden safely. Taking the proper steps to identify and remove raccoons from your home and garden can help to keep you, your family, and your property safe.

How To Keep Raccoons From Coming Back

Once the raccoons have been removed from your property, there are a few steps you can take to make sure they don’t come back.

First, raccoon-proof your home and garden by blocking potential entry points and removing any food sources. You should also use raccoon eviction fluid or predator urine around the perimeter of your home and garden.

Next, install motion-activated lights or sprinklers around your property, as these will help to keep raccoons from entering your home and yard. It is also a good idea to keep your yard clean and tidy by regularly removing any debris or clutter that raccoons may use for shelter. By taking these steps, you can help ensure that raccoons won’t return to your property in the future.


Where Do Raccoons Nest at Night?

Raccoons typically nest in attics, chimneys, basements, and walls of buildings. They may also build dens under a property’s decks, porches, sheds, and other structures.

What Time of The Year Do Raccoons Nest?

Raccoons typically look for their mate from January through June. Female raccoons may give birth to a litter of 2-5 kits between March and April. So, don’t be surprised to find some raccoons in your attic or chimney during this nesting season.

How Long Do Raccoons Stay in Their Nest?

Raccoons will stay in their nests for about 8-9 weeks until the kits are grown and ready to move on. The young will remain with their mother for another few months, after which they will disperse and find their own homes.


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