Sunday, June 30, 2013

Cooners



Lana and I have been throwing our food scraps into the back yard since we moved to our home outside Abita Springs. Why throw biodegradables in a landfill when they can at the least make mulch in your back yard, or perhaps feed local critters. Besides the birds, we soon began to attract possums, raccoons, and a fox at times. The raccoons have become our number one customers and for the past three years we’ve been seeing moms in the summer coming with babies in toe. This year, for the first time, we’ve got two mommas, one with two kits and the other with four.

Today, for the first time, we had both mommas and their families at the same time. We’re pretty sure the moms are from among the groups of babies from the last couple of years, which most likely makes them sisters. They are used to seeing each other in the yard and don’t fight among themselves, but I thought there might be fireworks today with the kits in tow. No problem, however. When the second set of kits came out of the woods, several members of the first set went tearing off to investigate and soon they were all playing together. It was fun to see.

Lana and I were both wondering why we find the little raccoons so adorable. Both kittens and puppies exhibit the characteristic big eyes and flat faces of human babies, thus making them resemble us a little bit more. Young raccoons look like miniature versions of the adults, without the flat faces. I think, though, it’s partly the playfulness and kind of goofiness of the young coons that Lana and I respond to. And they have so much energy. They never walk anywhere. They run, and in running they almost hop. They wrestle each other and explore every nook and cranny around them. In that way they’re more like human children.

Anyway, I’ll leave you with a few pics of our cooners for your enjoyment.

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25 comments:

Merisi said...

Your raccoon tales make me smile, those little ones are way too cute! ;-)

Somehow the coons reminded me of a book I read some time ago, Burkhard Bilger's Noodling for Flatheads. Do you know it?

Merisi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Animal babies are usually cute no matter what. (All right, rats - not so much.)
What seems to be their favorite food?

Cloudia said...

Thanks for sharing your delight. It's good for you, ya know!


ALOHA from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral
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Ty Johnston said...

I used to throw food out behind my place for the animals, mostly deer and squirrels and rabbits, but since reports of black bears started in the area I have cut that out. We also have plenty of wild turkeys, but they never come close to the house even if there is some kind of food out there. Opossums are all over the place, and frogs ... frogs like crazy. The nearest water source of any size is at least 200 hundred yards away through thick woods, so I don't know why we get so many frogs.

Charles Gramlich said...

Merisi, I don't know that book, although I know what noodling and flatheads are.

Alex, they really liked the marshmallows I threw to them. They also like anything that is fatty, like chicken bones. They love watermelon. They don't seem to care for potatoes or greens.

Cloudia, yes it is. We have fun watching them.

Ty, no bears around here as of yet. We do have a lot of frogs but there is a creek about twenty yards behind the house. And we get so much rain.

Christina said...

Super cute faces, but I had my run-in with them and they're pretty scary too.

Deka Black said...

Animal babies are cute... almost all the time. I haven't see yet a cute baby stork

Charles Gramlich said...

Christina, you don't want to get one mad, that is for sure.

Deka, there are probably some ugly baby animals in the world but not too many.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Charles, can you venture out while the raccoons are out in your backyard? Do they attack? I don't remember ever seeing one where I live though leopards and panthers are coming out of their natural habitat, a protected forest bordering the suburbs, and finding easy prey in little tribal kids and chicken. This is happening because we humans are encroaching on their land.

Riot Kitty said...

You find them adorable because they are impossibly cute!

Charles Gramlich said...

Prashant, the coons generally run if we go outside, although lately they've started tolerating Lana in the yard with them. One came up about ten feet from her today to get a piece of bread she threw to it. We know better than to try and catch one or pet one, though. They'd get pretty vicious then.

Riot kitty, yes, I think that is it. :)

the walking man said...

I suggest that if you have any Cajun friends that you do not let them know you have dinner coming to your door daily.

sage said...

They are cute until they get into the garage and then pop the trash can lids for the dogfood or bird feed (we keep them both in medal trash cans) and feast, and make a mess that they don't clean up... Great pictures.

pattinase (abbott) said...

You are brave. I would be way to worried about rabies and rats to attract animals.

Bernard Lee DeLeo said...

Very good post and pictures. You made my morning. :)

Paul R. McNamee said...

Cute. I had a summer like that during college when a raccoon family nested in our chimney.

We had our skunk go by last night while we were sitting on our deck. Fortunately, it's a 2nd floor deck.

Charles Gramlich said...

Mark, hey, I'm keeping it in mind in case I get hungry myself. They're nice and fat.

Sage, when I put out the trash I have to make sure there's no smelly things in it and put a big heavy rubber tire on top of the can.

Patti, I've lived in the country almost all my life. I've only seen one rabid animal. A skunk. I'd recognize it if I saw it in its bad stages, and we don't get close enough for them to bite us.

Bernard, as varmints go, they're better than most.

Keith West said...

Very cool. Thanks for posting.

H&H said...

that's awesome! we have a great open land beyond our fence, and sometimes we get deer or the occasional fox back there, but that's pretty much it.

- Greg

Charles Gramlich said...

Keith, cool, man.

Greg, Lana saw a deer run down the road in front of our house but I've never seen 'em out back . would like to.

Travis Cody said...

Great pics. We've had various raccoon sightings over the years in our condo complex. Although we're in the city of Bellevue with all that implies, we're surrounded by a wooded area that has lots of critters.

Animal control does clean out the raccoons though. They can be a bit destructive. I happened across one a couple of years ago on an early winter morning. It was quite cheeky and certainly not afraid of me as I came out of my door and walked to my vehicle.

Charles Gramlich said...

Travis Cody, we have to weigh down our trash cans to keep the coons out. We had to put up baffles to keep 'em out of our bird feeders. They are definitely destructive. I figure they are going to rule the world after we humans are gone.

jodi said...

Charles, raccoons are adorable a feature I do not find in possums. We have a fox family at our beach house and they too, are darling.

Charles Gramlich said...

Jodi, I've never seen baby foxes in the wild. I would love to do so.