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What Do Raccoons Like To Eat? The Gourmet Diets Of Brampton's Raccoons

Introduction to “what do raccoons eat”

Raccoons are opportunistic feeders, and won’t easily give up the hunt to eat food. Beneath the cover of darkness, raccoons roam the streets of Brampton in their never-ending quest for the perfect meal. These curious creatures are excellent climbers, allowing them to gain access to places most creatures cannot. Once they're in, they're on the hunt for their next tasty treat. So, what do raccoons eat? We’ll, they’re not picky―raccoons will eat almost anything, a balanced diet of both plants and small rodents. Commonly found items on their menu of foods include insects, fruits, nuts, and small animals such as rodents. But raccoons are not satisfied with your typical meal. They're also known for stealing bird eggs from nests found in the soffits of your home or digging for lawn grubs. And let's not forget about their notorious love for garbage night buffets. With such a diverse range of options, it's no wonder that raccoons have become such an integral part of Brampton's wildlife. So, buckle up! We're about to explore the surprisingly diverse food menu of our masked neighbours.

The Great Egg Heist

Just as the first streaks of dawn stretch across the horizon, and you find yourself cradling a warm mug, a saga unfolds above. Wild raccoons, those cunning bandits of suburbia, have been conducting their covert operations in the dead of night. With dexterity akin to nimble-thumbed locksmiths, they find food in places other creatures overlook. They possess “human hands” almost. These masked bandits also possess an insatiable appetite to steal eggs, and nothing satisfies quite like the delicate bounty of eggs from a constructed bird nest. Raccoons tend to be opportunistic feeders, but it is the call of an egg treasure that delights their whiskered faces. They are adept hunters, scaling the vertical outside walls of our homes with their sharp claws, to steal eggs from nests, with such finesse that would shame the most seasoned of climbers. Birds tuck their nests away, naively believing in the safety of the height, not knowing that each nestled egg calls out to those who hunt under the cloak of stars. It isn't a mere food source these creatures seek—it is the pulse-quickening thrill of the midnight hunt, the artful heist of nature's perfect food, that sets their hearts racing. Indeed, in the quiet afterglow of daybreak, the tale of the great egg heist endures as the ballet of Brampton’s backyard wilderness, as all food sources are up for grabs.
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A Lawn's Worst Nightmare

In the still of the night, a lawn braces for its worst nightmare—an onslaught by the masked marauders of mayhem, raccoons. Not content with their usual banquet of koi pond delights—of course, raccoons will eat the fish, frogs, and insects that dwell within—these furry bandits expand their diverse menu with some truly interesting things, even including the occasional scavenged delight of a dead animal. Their insatiable need to eat, to stay alive, drives them to feats of incredible acrobatics and relentless digging. Beneath the moonlight, they forage with crafty paws, leaving behind a quilt of upheaval on what was once a pristine green lawn. The raccoon's nightly visit is more than a mere nuisance; it's an epic battle between the will to maintain a perfect suburban lawn and the wild's relentless urge to scavenge and survive. But their gourmet escapades don't end there. Your meticulously cared-for lawn is a treasure trove of juicy lawn grubs that raccoons find irresistible. They'll turn your garden upside down, quite literally, in their quest for these snacks. It's a grub fiesta, and your lawn's the host! Your backyard paradise, once the neighbourhood's pride, is now a raccoon's grub-fueled feast and nothing—absolutely nothing—is off the table.

Garbage Night Buffets

Now, onto the pièce de résistance of "What Do Raccoons Eat in Brampton…." At night, a platoon of pint-sized pests emerges from the shadows, their eyes gleaming with anticipation. It is garbage night, a nocturnal feeding for these savvy scavengers, and the city's trash cans transform into their buffet tables under the stars. Here, raccoons live and reign supreme, their nimble fingers sifting through heaps with the discernment of a connoisseur. They find food - a bounty of human scraps discarded by one species (humans) only to delight another. These whiskered diners feast, sampling a nibble of this, a morsel of that, proving they can indeed eat almost anything. Yet, for these furry urbanites, garbage night is less about survival and more about the thrill of the feast, a culinary adventure in the world of refuse, a testament to the adaptability and winsome charm of the raccoon. Their sensitive sense of touch helps he, identify the choicest bits. Garbage night in Brampton is like Thanksgiving for raccoons. They mark their calendars (figuratively speaking, of course), ready to dive into a feeding of leftovers, discarded food, and occasionally, a sweet treat or two. These nights are not just about scavenging; they're about gourmet dining, raccoon style!

But Wait, There's More!

Aside from the aforementioned delicacies, raccoons are not ones to shy away from variety. They're the ultimate omnivores, snacking on:

  • Fallen fruit from trees, These nocturnal animals find joy in the abundance of food sources from trees, fallen fruits and nuts —a feast laid at its paws. The raccoon’s agile fingers deftly examine each piece, selecting the choicest bits. Apples, berries, and nuts become more than mere food sources; they are a gourmet's bounty for this opportunistic eater, each nibble is a celebration of nature’s giving. With this, we are reminded that even the simplest of foods, like fallen fruit, can sustain life in the most enchanting ways. of course, maintaining your yard and picking up any fallen fruit can assist in deterring raccoons from visiting your property.

  • Veggies from your garden, In the quiet hush of twilight, a familiar rustling can be heard near the verdant rows of your cherished veggie garden. This isn't the gentle breeze whispering through the leaves, but the stealthy pitter-patter of little paws on a mission. Raccoons emerge from the shadows with their eyes set on a cornucopia of fresh vegetables. Potatoes, peas, and the sweetest melons stand no chance against these nocturnal foragers. With adept hands almost human in their dexterity, they'll feast on just-plucked corn and crunch through the flesh of just-ripened melons. Under the moon's watchful eye, raccoons aren't merely pests; they're nature's agile bandits, ensuring their diet is as balanced as it is deviously acquired. The garden you've tended with care does more than yield food for your table—it sets the stage for midnight feasts, where raccoons revel in the abundance of food.

  • Small rodents, koi fish or insects, Beneath the glow of the moon, raccoons, with their distinctive, black mask-like facial markings and bushy ringed tails, emerge as true omnivores and hunters. A raccoon’s diet is as diverse as the landscapes it inhabits; it shuffles through the underbrush with sharp claws that probe the earth for grubs, while its nimble fingers pluck fish, insects, frogs, small rabbits, mice, or rats with remarkable dexterity. Their sensitive sense of touch helps raccoons identify food. Often misunderstood as mere scavengers, these intelligent creatures adapt their palate to feast on a spectrum that ranges from succulent dead carrion to the cherished koi from an unguarded backyard pond. When motion detector lights flicker to life, revealing raccoons mid-reach, one can't help but marvel at the sheer amount of food this opportunistic mammal manages to procure. Raccoons are not picky eaters; they remain the quintessential example of an omnivore, ready and willing to consume almost any type of food that nature—or unwitting humans—offers.

  • Pet food is left outside, During the nighttime, the world becomes a private banquet for the curious animals that prowl our urban and suburban areas. The raccoons, with their nimble paws, are no exception as they skitter across backyards in the dead of night. For them, feeding time begins with the scent of an easy meal—often found in the unguarded pet food bowls filled to the brim by humans, for their beloved Fido or Fluffy. These cunning creatures, adaptable and audacious, see our well-intentioned pet nourishment as an open invitation. Drawn by the tantalizing aromas and the promise of a feast, raccoons take little care in how much food they consume, feasting with reckless abandon. To discourage these masked bandits, pet owners are wise to bring pet food dishes indoors, allowing their four-legged companions to eat in peace while keeping the raccoon diet more naturally wild.

  • Bird-feeder Birdseed, In the warmth of early summer, the garden becomes a bustling hub of wild activity, drawing in different birds with its bountiful promise. Among the fluttering wings of birds, an opportunistic adult raccoon emerges, its mask-like eyes glinting with clever intentions. It patiently raids beneath the feeders, seeking out the bird seed dropped in hasty takeoffs or careless pecking. The scattered seeds are a feast fit for a cunning scavenger. Deftly with nimble paws, it collects its unexpected treasure, reminding us of nature's perpetual cycle where nothing, not even a sunflower husk, goes to waste.

What Do Baby Raccoons Eat

What adult raccoons and baby raccoons eat differs with their age. For baby raccoons, also known as kits, their diet primarily consists of their mother's milk for the first few weeks of life. This milk provides all the necessary nutrients for their growth and development during this early stage.

As they grow older, typically around 8 to 12 weeks of age, they gradually start to wean off milk and begin to incorporate solid food into their diet. This transition period involves the introduction of a variety of foods, including fruits, vegetables, nuts, and proteins such as insects, eggs, and even dead animals.

Caretakers of orphaned raccoons often use a high-protein puppy milk replacer as a temporary substitute for the mother's milk, slowly introducing soft foods and eventually moving to a more varied diet as the raccoon matures. The diet of a baby raccoon needs to mimic what they would find in the wild as closely as possible to ensure they develop the necessary skills for foraging and hunting as they grow.


Q: Are raccoons dangerous? A: While raccoons tend to stir intrigue with their dexterous hands and inquisitive gaze, they are wild animals whose unpredictability can cast a shadow on their charming demeanour. Most of them are fine, healthy specimens, living parallel to humans without incident, partaking in the occasional trash cans banquet. Yet, the risk of diseases like rabies and distemper looms, injecting a dose of caution into our furry encounters. Other animals in our backyards manage to coexist without ruffling feathers, but raccoons, with their penchant for curiosity, occasionally catch blame for disturbances. Best to keep your distance. We must admire from afar, respect their space, and safeguard our homes, for in doing so, we minimize the perils while preserving the quirks of these nocturnal bandits. Contact Brampton Wildlife Control if you notice them setting up camp, so to speak. We have the experience, the know-how, and the tools to move them along. Raccoons can become defensive if they’re cornered or threatened. It's best to admire them from a distance, secure your trash cans and call in the pros!

Q: Do raccoons hibernate? A: Raccoons are fascinating creatures that have adapted to the ever-changing Canadian climate. Although many animals choose to hibernate in the winter, raccoons live on and take a different approach. Instead, wild raccoons eat as much food as possible in the late autumn, to store body fat for the long and frosty months ahead. This food source sustains them, and they stay alive and well during the colder periods. Raccoons are known to sleep for long periods during the winter, but they do need to come out of their den for water. So, while these animals may not hibernate in the strictest sense of the word, they certainly know how to prepare themselves for a long, cold winter season. Some people report seeing them outside in the winter, seemingly pleading for food, but feeding raccoons is not a good idea, it’s best not to, as they can survive the cold months naturally.

Q: Can I prevent raccoons from raiding my garbage cans and bird feeders? A: In the tranquillity of your backyard, you’d like to enjoy the activity of feathered friends, but the crafty antics of other animals can pose a real challenge. To ensure your bird sanctuary remains raccoon-proof, consider adding baffles above and below the feeders, securing them firmly against these agile climbers. Investing in raccoon-proof bird feeders or placing them out of reach can help protect your feathered friends' foods. To deter raccoons from getting into your trash cans, either weigh down the cover so it cannot open it, or keep them in your garage or shed until garbage day arrives.

Q: What should I do if I find a raccoon nesting in my soffits? A: During the night, the rustle above your head might not just be the whispering leaves; it could be the telltale sign of meddlesome raccoons nesting in your soffits. Residents of Brampton, take heed, for these black mask nocturnal marauders, with their ringed tails, have been known to pry open the vulnerable soffits of your home. Beware the urge to simply seal the damage—this could entrap a wild raccoon, or worse, a litter of baby raccoons, creating chaos within your walls as they strive fervently to reunite with the great outdoors. Before you find yourself outsmarted, call upon Brampton Wildlife Control. Our expert team exercises the utmost care in coaxing these clever creatures out safely, ensuring they cannot return by implementing robust exclusion screening complemented by a one-way exit strategy. Marvel as they waddle away – their body fat rich as nature's buffer against winter's scarcity – ready to find another home or den to occupy. They'll safely relocate to a more appropriate habitat.


So, there you have it! In conclusion, Brampton's raccoons have developed quite a sophisticated dining palate. These furry bandits will stop at nothing to indulge in their next delicious meal, from raiding bird nests in your home's soffits to foraging for lawn grubs and tearing through garbage cans on buffet night. And while it's fascinating to watch them hunt and eat almost anything, it's important to ensure they don't gain access to your attic or other indoor spaces. Installing motion detector lights and taking preventative measures can help keep these sneakily intelligent raccoons at bay. And if they do find a way in, Brampton Wildlife Control is available to help remove them safely and humanely. So let's appreciate these resourceful creatures from afar while ensuring that we coexist with nature's midnight gourmets.

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