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Raccoons

The raccoon is abundant throughout much of North America and is an inhabitant in the Laurel Lake area. This mammal grows to a lengthof 38 inches including its tail and to a weight of 25 pounds.

Raccoons have black markings that resemble masks and a long,fine coat with a bushy tail. The tail has 4 to 7 very dark rings.In captivity, raccoons have been known to live up to 12 years.

Raccoons live both in trees and on the ground. They are excellent climbers. They live alone or in small family groups.Raccoons are nocturnal and travel within a range of 200 acres.

Raccoons that live in the Laurel Lake area most likely live instumps of trees or in hollow logs.

Raccoons breed once per year between January and June.Nine weeks following mating, the female gives birth to 1 to 7 offspring.Most, however, have 3 or 4 per year. Some females mate at 12 months ofage.

The newborn raccoons have no masks nor do they have tail rings.When they are 4 months old, they are completely weaned. Their eyes are open after 21 days and their hearing arrives shortly after that.Babies remain in the den 8 to 10 weeks and follow