How to keep the raccoons away
Although there is no such thing as Raccoon season seems like late spring to early summer is the prime time for us to hear.. “A raccoon ate all my fish what can I do?”
Although there are a few things you can do after your pond is already built, the time to really think about it is in the planning stage of your pond.
To start we have to think about the physical attributes of the critter. They have a pretty heavy body and short little front arms. Not at all strong enough to do pull ups. Back legs are strong enough to make a nice jump from rock or shelve to the pond side. Also it is important to note, that a raccoon is a very good swimmer. Deep or shallow water is of no consequence. All they care about is if they get in the pond they can get back out again.
So keeping that in mind… When building your pond in an area that is known to have raccoons be sure that you have straight sides with no shelves. Even an island in the middle can be an escape route for a clever raccoon. Another design would be to include a cave or two and a depth of at least three feet. This will give your fish a chance to find a hiding spot in the pond.
Now if the pond is a done deal and you are now needing to keep these nasty little varmints away from your treasured pond friends we do have some options.
A few options would include a Fido fence. Although designed to halt a dog it works very well with raccoons. It is a low voltage fence that is easily installed around the perimeter of your pond. If an animal touches it they will receive a small shock. It will not hurt them, just convince them to go somewhere that is an easier score.
Another choice is coyote, wolf or bobcat urine. It will of course falsely make the raccoon think there is a danger for them to go in this area. On that note a watch dog in the yard at night is a big deterrent for raccoons.
Trapping and removing them is another way to get them out of your yard. Setting the trap with cookies is their favorite. Check your areas regulations to see how they want you to handle trapped wildlife.
Adding a lot of aquatic plants will make it hard for raccoons or other critters to see the fish and can discourage them. Especially if they have other easier places to find what they are looking for.
Raccoon are of course wild animals just looking for something to eat. If they are in populated areas they will do whatever they need to feed themselves and their families. Some people feel if you leave food out for them they will leave your pond alone. Some say never leave anything out as it will attract them.
These critters can be a big problem but there are things you can do so don’t let them discourage you from enjoying your pond.