Actual Size: Up to 2.5 feet

Characteristics: Raccoons are easily identifiable by their facial markings. Raccoons typically have dark circles surrounding their eyes, with a black band down the middle. Their facial mask is reminiscent of a “bandit’s” mask.


  • Raccoons are known for their roaming, destructive behavior in urban environments.
  • They can carry rabies.
  • Raccoons are nocturnal.
  • They prefer to rest or sleep in abandoned holes or up in trees.

Raccoons in SE Louisiana and Mississippi

Raccoons are nomadic, but only within a marked territory. Although they do not dig or make nests, raccoons prefer to mark locations, remembering them as available shelters. They will sleep in abandoned burrows, the crooks of trees, empty crawl spaces, underneath porches, and within attics. These medium-sized mammals roam around in rural or urban areas, finding food where they can and scouting new locations. Raccoons will eat almost anything, including insects, fruit, vegetables, and small animals, if necessary. Notorious for raiding garbage cans, raccoons are primarily nocturnal creatures, however, nursing mothers can roam during daylight hours for food or shelter. Daylight behavior is not a good indication of rabies, but foaming at the mouth, erratic movements, and distress are a solid indication that the animal is affected.

Threats Caused by Raccoons

Sometimes referred to as  “backyard bandits”, raccoons rummage through garbage cans, popping kiddie pools, and generally causing mayhem. These mammals also can also carry diseases and bacteria and can be a serious concern if they frequent your property and backyard.

How to Prevent Raccoons on Your Property

To keep raccoons away from your home as they seek out food and shelter, utilize these preventative measures:

  • Make sure all spaces around or under your home are carefully sealed or fenced off. Raccoons will sleep under porches or in attics if there’s a way in.
  • Make sure your garbage areas are controlled and tidy, and all lids or closures are secure.
  • Don’t leave pet food out at night.
  • If you do have any abandoned burrows in your yard, fill them in.

These steps will keep raccoons from becoming too comfortable in your yard or home.

Controlling Raccoons

Raccoons can generally be dissuaded from frequenting your backyard if you deter them from sleeping or eating. If you do have a problem with raccoons in your yard, there are multiple methods of removing them. It’s always best to call a professional pest control expert, as they can choose the most effective way to rid your yard of these backyard roamers, ensuring the animals are permanently removed in a safe way.