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When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Coatimundis, Kinkajous, Raccoons, Ringtails, Cacomistles, Olingos

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Ash
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When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Ash » Wed Aug 03, 2011 5:27 pm

I saw a little raccoon today crossing the road. It was quite small, and I was worried it was too little to be on its own. I didn't see its mom or any family members. It was maybe the size of a young, squat cat.

I didn't do anything, just because I wasn't sure if it was old enough to leave its mom, and I didn't want to touch it in case it had rabies or something.

So what age/size are raccoons when they can live on their own?
I'm Fable and Ifrit's mommy. Also mommy to Carousel, Breeze, and a bunch of snakes, lizards, and spiders. Oh, and one amphibian!
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Foxyjadda » Wed Aug 03, 2011 6:20 pm

i found this on bing.com

“How do I know whether the babies are old enough to survive on their own?”
They will leave the current nest for another location with their mother when they are able to walk and are approximately 3 months old. The best way to tell is by contacting a rehabilitator who can help you to determine the age of the raccoon. Raccoon babies stay with their mothers up to 9 months or until maturity sends them on their own paths.



hopes this helps :lol:
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Ash » Wed Aug 03, 2011 7:17 pm

Thanks.

So that probably means it wasn't supposed to be alone. icon-sad Hope it will do okay. I wanted to get it to someone if it wasn't supposed to be on its own, but I didn't want to take it out of its home if I didn't need to. Baby foxes leave the den to explore, and often people think they are orphans when they are not. I wasn't sure if raccoons did something similar.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby sarajeku » Wed Aug 03, 2011 7:47 pm

They start exploring away from the nest at 6 to 9 weeks, and around 16 weeks, the mother begins weaning them. But they tend to stay with their mothers through their first winter.
Like foxes, people bring them into rehab thinking they're orphans even though they're not.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Ash » Wed Aug 03, 2011 9:22 pm

Okay, thanks, Sarajeku. I feel a lot better now... I wasn't sure whether coons did that or not, which is why I didn't do anything. It just looked awfully small, but I suppose animals, unlike humans, develop their independence much quicker.

I hope the little guy doesn't cross too many more roads!
I'm Fable and Ifrit's mommy. Also mommy to Carousel, Breeze, and a bunch of snakes, lizards, and spiders. Oh, and one amphibian!
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Trefoil » Thu Aug 04, 2011 7:33 am

Depending on when it was born, it probably shouldn't have been alone. Like Sara said, they leave the nest and start exploring- with their mother and unless something happens stay with her until after the first winter. Whether the coon was okay depends on whether it had enough time with its mother showing it how to survive. I think in colder climates (MI for example) coons get a lot bigger. Although from the weather we've been having you wouldn't know it.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Ash » Thu Aug 04, 2011 3:24 pm

Should I have gotten the coon to a rehabber then? Or is it safer for it to just be left alone?

(just asking in case there is ever a "next time")
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby sarajeku » Thu Aug 04, 2011 3:39 pm

We suggest leaving them alone.
Most likely, the mother was somewhere nearby.

If there is a next time, you can put the baby in a box with a warm blanket and put it exactly where you found it. Then watch from a well hidden place (do not let the mother see you). The mother should return within 3-4 hours. After they're gone, you can get your box and blanket back.
Do not feed the kit, especially if it is cold. A no brainer: don't cuddle it.
If you're worried, next time, call a rehabber before you leave the area. But usually, unless you see the mother dead, then the kit probably isn't orphaned.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Neofelis » Mon Aug 08, 2011 6:42 am

Why especially if it's cold? :egeek:
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby sarajeku » Mon Aug 08, 2011 11:38 am

First of all, it's a wild animal we're talking about. You shouldn't be feeding it in the first place. You need to get it to a licensed rehabber. But if you feed it while it is cold, you could kill it. It needs to be warmed up first.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Trefoil » Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:06 pm

Sara - taken at face value- your explanation for not feeding makes no sense. Do you mean if its cold outside or if the animal is cold? If the animal is cold, then by taking your advice, which i'm sure is politically correct, to leave where is would likely result in the death of the animal. If you meant when it is cold outside,then how do you figure an animal survives the winter? I realize that the legal view is not to rescue animals in trouble, but I believe the original question was about what would give the best chance of the animal's survival, not the "politically correct" stance. Unless you are unable to properly care for the animal, there is no reason to send it to a rehabber, unless you know the rehabber personally, you have no way of knowing whether or not they are going to just kill it. Maybe in the city its different but where I come from anyway, I grew up taking temporary care of animals found orphaned, whether from the death of mother or loss of habitat.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby sarajeku » Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:53 pm

I meant if the animal is cold.
And it is illegal to take care of a baby raccoon (at least here) taken from the wild. If you get caught, then the baby will get confiscated and put to sleep. Not might. Will.
That is what rehabbers are for. A wildlife rehab center (like the one I work for) will not take a baby raccoon just to kill it. That is not what we are here for. If a rehabber cannot care for the kit, then he or she will just simply tell you that they won't take it in.
When an animal is in trouble, then by all means, yes, contact a rehabber and rescue it. I am simply saying not to feed it yourself. Many people we see who try to rescue babies, meaning well, will feed them the wrong supplements and end up killing the babies in the process (i.e. feeding them cow's milk when they need something specialized).
I'm glad you're in a rural area and can do it yourself, but I live in a city and I just automatically assume that people asking about it do as well.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Trefoil » Mon Aug 08, 2011 5:58 pm

Thanks to the Peta morons, where I live it is illegal to rescue baby coons huddling on the road beside their dead mother. Or at least that's what I was told when I called the DNR to get the name of a rehabber to take them. When I told her that was stupid she connected me to the state police. So I told him. That's what civil disobedience is for. There are some very good rehabbers out there, but you have to KNOW, before you turn over a helpless animal to them. On an exotic pet site I just assume that if the members are unaware of the needs of a rescue and are willing to try they are aware of where to get help.
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby Ash » Mon Aug 08, 2011 6:21 pm

In some places it is illegal to move wildlife across county lines, and therefore it can't even go to a rehabber if there isn't one in your area. :roll:
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Re: When do Wild Coons Leave their Mother?

Postby sarajeku » Mon Aug 08, 2011 6:26 pm

Oh don't get me started on peta. Can't stand them. lol
You have a very good point. All of the rehabbers that I know are very good, but I'm sure there are some out there who are not.
And Ash, we recently had a problem with that. Someone needed to bring a raccoon from ohio and couldn't bring him across the state line. Fortunately, a closer rehab center was able to take him.
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