Raccoons regularly make nests inside attics and trees. The females typically have 3-5 young per litter. The nesting season is usually in spring, with the peak time for birth in March, and the babies are frequently noticeable in April. However, the nesting season differs depending on what part of the nation the raccoon lives in. In the south, they may deliver any time of the year, although spring is still the most common time.
Is There a Nest of Baby Raccoons?
Yes. Pretty much each time raccoons are in the attic, it’s a female who has a litter of young. She’ll find her way into the attic, normally in the spring, from March to May, and brings to life 3-5 young. They can walk around at about 6 weeks of age, but they take a while to mature, and the mom keeps them in the attic for approximately 8 months while they grow and teaches them how to survive. If you remove just the female raccoon while the litter of young is less than 6 weeks old, you will have a problem. The young might scratch or claw, perhaps through the ceiling, or they might starve to death and rot and stink. It is really inhumane to get rid of a nursing female raccoon and leave the young behind. To find the nest, search all around the attic. Look for the areas with heavy droppings, and trails in the insulation. You might have to dig around a bit. The trick used most often is to be in the dark attic, completely still, for approximately half an hour. At some point, the young will make some singing chattering, and you’ll be able to identify their location. The nest is normally at the edge of the attic, near the eaves, or down in the eave itself. Get rid of the nest by hand, and then move the child raccoons with the mother, or bring them to a wildlife rehabber. You can likewise, wait until they are about 12 weeks old, at which time they will begin to leave the attic during the night with their mother, on foraging trips. You can catch them all in cage traps at this time, or you can seal shut the entry hole as soon as you know they are all out for sure.
Raccoons and Nests
A raccoon will build a bed similar to a lot of animals, and a raccoon within a home is most likely looking to have a family. A raccoon is not fussy about what it uses for a nest. Outside, the most common materials used are long grasses and hay, though the creature is smart enough to cart fabric remnants back to a den area. Raccoons inside of a home are far more at ease. Insulation supplies fantastic convenience and heat, and a raccoon will shred the product until it generates enough of a pile to burrow within. When it comes time to give birth, a mom raccoon in a house will be far more at ease than one outside. This is why most invading raccoons are females. If you’re going to eliminate the adult, you will need to do a comprehensive search for young. There is almost always a cluster of packages someplace in the home. If you’re unsure of their whereabouts, wait until nighttime and listen for squeaks and soft sounds. It’s hard to tell a raccoon nest from other animals’ if you do not have a trained eye. A squirrel nest might be just as large; however, a squirrel nest tends to be more complex than that of a raccoon.
How to Know If the Raccoon Had Babies
It’s always best to presume the raccoon in your attic had babies somewhere in the building. That’s not to say you will not periodically encounter a male raccoon in the attic, but females offer their own difficulties when it comes to removal. Beyond that, unless you’re an expert who can tell a female raccoon just by looking at it, you’re going to have to guess.
Raccoons and Their Young
Most individuals will have a problem with a female raccoon in the house. That’s not to say a particularly bad winter won’t drive male raccoons into an attic, but the majority of the time the pest up there is a mother-to-be, and she’s preparing for nesting season. In nature, male raccoons kill litters that are not theirs. This throws the female into another heat cycle and enables that male to breed with her. It’s an unfortunate cycle, and female raccoons are all too familiar with the threat males are to their babies. Because of this, a female raccoon will often leave her regular area to discover a place safe. There are few locations as protected from the weather and predators as in a human home. When the female finds her way inside she’ll set out to make a nest. This nest is going to be made of insulation and anything else she can tear off the walls of your home. Normally, though not all the time, the nest will be unreachable to you, down inside of a wall, or tucked into an eave. Getting the litter out is just as crucial as getting the female out. Frequently, you can use the babies to lure the mom into a cage trap if you can get the litter nest of baby raccoons out of the attic.
If you find a raccoon nest in a tree, it’s no cause for alarm. If you do want to move them, be sure you capture and move them all together, the mom plus the juvenile raccoons, so that the mother can care for the young after you relocate them. You can set a trap at the base of the tree for the adult, and then get rid of the nest from the tree by hand, and put them in an animal carrier, and bring them all to the exact same place when it’s time to let them go.
Consult A Professional
While seeking advice from an expert is practical for getting rid of any animals in your attic, this is particularly true of baby raccoons. The nest of infants makes the whole process more complex, particularly if the mother is present and becomes aggressively protective of her babies. Some areas of the country will have limitations as to where you can release raccoons and other wildlife and may even need a license or something comparable to trap these animals.
The Bottom Line
It’s hard work. You have to either search for a nest and get rid of it by hand, and then relocate the baby raccoons with the mother, or bring them to a wildlife rehabber. Don’t leave the nest of helpless young behind in your attic! They can scratch and claw, and if they don’t get out, they will starve, die, and decompose and cause an odor problem.
Noises In Attic At Night