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Hummers and racoons

June 14th, 2012

I got up in the middle of the night to get a drink of water. As I passed the patio door I saw a dark shape on the deck railing.  Without my glasses and bleary eyed with sleep, I flick on the porch light. To my amazement, I see a large raccoon sitting upright on his ‘honches’, my humming bird feeder raised in his hands, guzzling the sweet red liquid as fast as he could! My mind raced as I thought about what to do. Should I open the door to scare him away?  What if he is startled and runs toward me and gets into the house? So I flicked the lights on and off thinking that would make him get the message – it worked with my kids if they were outside late and needed to quit what they were doing. This had no effect other than he glanced at the direction of the light and kept gulping. So, I knocked on the window with both hands drumming a beat like rolling thunder to scare him away.  This got his attention, but it also got the attention of my sleeping husband and daughter who came running to see what the ruckus was!  The coon got away and my family was wide awake and annoyed with me and our furry visitor!

Tis the season that creates interesting situations with the wildlife in our backyards.  I am grateful for the information that our ISU Extension & Outreach Wildlife http://www.extension.iastate.edu/wildlife/ program offers.  I also use   http://www.extension.org/ to access resources across the nation in many different topics. You can also ask an expert for help with a specific issue.

What critters are you sharing your space with this summer?

Kristi Cooper

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