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Citizen complaint of the day: Raccoon family on the move in Charlestown

Raccoon family skulking around Charlestown

A concerned citizen files a 311 complaint about a family of raccoons roaming the neighborhood (with a note that there are two more raccoons not shown in the photo):

Came in and out of alley way and then moved forward to Hill Street & Cook Street Court.


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They’re moving to East Boston , the high rents in Charlestown are pathetic.

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But also kind of creepy, especially in large numbers. But not disturbing enough to merit a 311 report.

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They're always adorable when they're in someone else's trash.

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Your tired, your poor, Your furry huddled masses yearning to breathe free ...

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Do you want someone to come murder these animals? Would you do that yourself? If not, maybe don’t request someone else does while creating enough distance from yourself to pretend that’s not what you are doing.

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Which is pretty standard when raccoons make their home in a basement or attic.

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Raccoons have been here longer than this country has. Maybe exiling all life from anywhere near humans is not sustainable?

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we can also recognize that some human/animal interactions are not good for humans or animals, and try to control and manage those where possible.

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They won't grumble about neighborhood parking stickers...

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they're being drawn by e.g. uncollected trash or similar, which the city could do something about as well.

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Do some reading. It’s anything but ‘pretty standard’ to relocate animals you have trapped. In Massachusetts you’re required to euthanize them.

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But don't even expect them to be trapped first. I had a friend that called pest control about her racoon problem. The guy found the raccoon and took out a 22 and shot the animal in front of her 10 year old son. This might even be a more compassionate response but she would have preferred her son not be there.

I agree with leaving them where they are if possible. Trash can be secured. They compete with the rats, but the rats are not native.

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What I want is for the 311 system to work the way such systems are intended: for the racoon report to be logged in a geographic database so that, at some future point, if it appears that we might have a raccoon problem, someone can pull up a map and ask, "Show me where there have been multiple raccoon sightings."

And by "raccoon problem," I don't mean an occasional sighting, I mean large numbers of racoons ripping the trash apart, or repeated sightings of disoriented and potentially rabid racoons out during the day, etc.

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If anyone out there has a problem with living near raccoons, I have some bad news about living in any temperate part of the United States.

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It's coded as "rodent sighting" and I won't stand for such a fallacious characterization of a carnivoran.

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"Very cute, thank you! Ticket closed."

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There is an article on this month's National Geographic describing the surprisingly varied wildlife to be found in Chicago. Apparently even bears are permanent residents there.

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