How Dangerous Is It To Have Raccoons On My Tampa Property?

raccoon wildlife pest

Raccoons are an animal that everyone recognizes, but there are a lot of facts about these species that people don’t realize. One misconception many people have is that raccoons are large rodents, but they actually belong to their own genus of species called Procyon that includes three different raccoons found throughout the world.

However, while they aren’t rodents or marsupials, raccoons in Tampa, Florida can still be a problem for home and business owners. They are common wildlife in the area, and they will often make their way onto area properties in search of food or shelter.

In the wild, raccoons usually sleep in large holes in trees or other den-like areas. However, they will also find many places to sleep and rest that are near and in human dwellings such as attics, crawl spaces, barns, and sheds.

What Do Raccoons Look Like?

You probably have some idea of what these creatures look like, and they can even seem cute when seen from afar despite posing some health and safety risks. They are most well-known for the black mask-like markings they have around their eyes. You can also identify raccoons by their salt-and-pepper gray fur and their ringed tails. They are stocky and can grow to about 2 to three feet long as adults.

Are Raccoons Dangerous?

When it comes to raccoons, many people hold one of two beliefs, and neither one is completely accurate. Some people see raccoons as friendly, cuddly creatures that won’t attack humans at all, while others see them as aggressive, rabies-ridden menaces. The truth is somewhere in the middle. Raccoons aren’t always aggressive, and they don’t all have rabies. However, they are a major carrier of rabies in the United States.

Along with rabies, there are other diseases that raccoons can spread including raccoon roundworm. They can carry ticks and fleas which spread other illnesses to both pets and people. So, overall, raccoons aren’t an animal you want to have around your property or to interact with, even if they are likely to be nonaggressive try to hide from people.

In the ecosystem, raccoons help renew the soil and spread plant seeds.  However, when on your property, raccoons can cause property damage. They may tear through, or chew on, outbuildings, attics, or chimneys as they use these areas to create dens. They will occasionally even rip off shingles or boards to gain access to attics or walls.

Raccoon Prevention Tips

Because of the risks that raccoons pose, it’s a good idea to make your Tampa property less appealing to them. While you can’t ensure you’ll never get a raccoon around your home or business, you can make the area less attractive to them by following some simple steps.

  • Proper trash storage is one of the most important raccoon prevention measures as they will get into and eat trash. Make sure to place secured, animal-proof lids on all trash cans.
  • Raccoons will also get into any outdoor pet food, so make sure to store all animal food inside and in airtight containers.
  • Install things like lattices or steel screens to keep raccoons from getting under porches.
  • Place a screen on top of chimneys if you have one.

How To Remove Raccoons From Your Yard

If you have noticed signs of raccoons around your property, it’s not a good idea to try to handle them by yourself. While they aren’t always aggressive, they will defend themselves if necessary.

The safest and most effective way to handle a raccoon problem is to get help from the experts at EcoTech Pest Control Services. Give us a call today at (813) 544-3902 to learn more about our residential and commercial pest control plans.