Scientific name: Procyon lotor

Class: Mammals

Family: Procyonidae

Order: Carnivora

Life span:

  • Average in the wild: 5 years 
  • Maximum in the wild: 16 years 
  • In captivity: 22 years


During the Spring months, male raccoons are on a mission to expand their territory and amass as many mates as possible. While they may be successful in finding multiple partners during this time of year, female racoons only give birth once annually with an average litter size between one-seven kits. Furthermore, after the mating has taken place males will leave behind the females who are then left alone to care for her young until maturity arrives 65 days later.

After a brief period of darkness, cubs awaken to the world with newly opened eyes after 18-24 days. Over winter they huddle close by their mothers’ side until it’s time for them to venture forth on their own in springtime and take on life’s new challenges.


Raccoons are masterful scavengers, feasting on a smorgasbord of anything they can find! From nuts and berries to snakes and frogs – these resourceful creatures will eat just about anything. Though omnivorous by nature, their diets become increasingly carnivorous in some regions.

  • Wild grapes
  • Cherries
  • Apples
  • Blueberries
  • Acorns
  • Roots
  • Crayfish
  • Insects
  • Rodents
  • Frogs
  • Pisces
  • Birds eggs

During the harvesting months, wheat is an essential dietary staple for many. On a less savory note, raccoons are scavengers and will eagerly descend upon any carcass they can find.


The adaptable raccoon is a master survivor, thriving in diverse climates – from balmy Central America to frosty Canada. It is equally content amongst humans or deep within the forest and can easily locate its preferred temperature: cool and moist. Unsurprisingly, this clever creature has carved out an impressive habitat range encompassing both urban jungles as well as rural woodlands near water sources.

The crafty raccoon will search far and wide for the perfect place to call home. He may take shelter in a cozy tree hollow, an underground burrow, or even a human dwelling like barns, garages and sheds! We humans can’t help but marvel at this resourceful creature’s habit of finding solace wherever it is needed most.

Where does the name raccoon come from?

This curious creature goes by a very literal name–it’s known for its habit of ‘dipping’ in the water while enjoying meals.

Why do we not see raccoons during the day?

The mysterious raccoon leads a nocturnal lifestyle, nestled in its den during the day while it remains safe from predators. Only under the cover of night does it venture out to explore and scavenge for food.

Is the raccoon a stuntman?

From a fast ground speed of 24 km/h (15 m/h) to agile climbing and fearlessly performing stunts, the raccoon is an amazing stuntman! With its incredible swimming skills and ability to withstand a fall from fifteen meters without injury, it definitely lives up to the title.

Is the raccoon smart?

With nimble hands and quick wits, this clever creature can climb the tallest of trees, deftly unravel a seashell’s mysteries, open locked doors with ease – even pop off those pesky bin lids! Truly an impressive feat for any animal.

Why do they always come back to my trash cans night after night?

Don’t be alarmed if you’ve got a new furry friend near your home! That’s right – the friendly neighborhood raccoon has set up camp in your general vicinity, and isn’t planning on traveling too far. This nocturnal adventurer may only travel just shy of 4 km each night to find food and take care of their basic needs, so chances are they won’t wander away anytime soon.

What does the raccoon do in the winter?

The raccoon is a truly remarkable creature – while other animals seek shelter in the winter, it remains active and plucky despite colder temperatures. Its secret to survival lies within its physiology; with metabolism and temperature remaining constant throughout the seasons, this resilient animal lives off of fat reserves built up during warmer months that can help him shed as much as half his weight during periods where food sources are scarce.

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