North American Raccoon


A medium-sized mammal native to North America, densely wooded areas, riparian streams, and mixed forests are the original habitats of the North American Raccoon (Procyon lotor), or Mapache in Spanish. Though still inhabiting those areas they have adapted to living in urban communities and can be found in many areas throughout San Diego County scavenging in garbage cans or backyard dog and cat food bowls. They are primarily nocturnal and have excellent night vision and hearing.

The black mask around the Raccoon's eyes is its most distinctive feature and they are known for the habit of washing their food before they eat it if they are near water.

VIDEO CREDIT: Wayne D. Lewis / CPW

AUDIO CREDIT: Jason Reinier, Earprint Productions

PHOTO CREDIT: Wayne D. Lewis / CPW