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how smart are raccoons?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by mistylady, Oct 6, 2008.

  1. mistylady

    mistylady Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 1, 2008
    Ohio near Coshocton
    Last night a big tubby coon was spotted and he seemed very suer that the dogs couldn't get him. He just waddled along in front of the porch. Needless to say he picked up his pace when he saw a human. This was at 5 am. Every early mornign the dogs have been pitching a royal fit so I'm thinking that the coon has a set routine and he walks the path every night. Does anyone know if this is possible?

    So here's what I've done. The dogs are kenneled at night and can only bark at critters. So a little while ago I put one of them on a 30 foot cable where he can go down the path the coon was on and he can lay on the steps to the porch. He has food and water and I'll be sleeping on the couch with a rifle nearby so I can dispatch the coon if I get a shot. I'm plotting the demise of the bandit!!!! If it doesn't work the only bad thing will be a stiff back in the morning!
     
  2. CoyoteMagic

    CoyoteMagic RIP ?-2014

    A coon can gut a dog in the matter of minutes not to mention the possibility of rabies.

    How smart are coons? Let's put it this way...... Hope the lock on your coop comes with a key that you wear around your neck; otherwise they are getting in!
     
  3. mistylady

    mistylady Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jun 1, 2008
    Ohio near Coshocton
    The small door for the chickens is double bolted and I have to lean all my weight on the locks to get them open. After the bolts are slide open I have to put one hand on the coop wall and brace my knee on the ramp to get the door open. The big door is padlocked. The windows are shut at the moment but have hardware cloth over them doubled layer plus the regular screen for the warm weather. The vent at the top of the gable has a metal grate over it plus its 11 feet up in the gable.

    The dog is a Norwegian Elkhound bred for bear hunting in WV and mooe hunting in Norway. They do not attack but rather alert. Our female has attacked birds but the male has never done any killing or harming. He just barks. And I'll very near on the couch - one room over from the frontdoor. If the coon can outrun my Benelli 12 guage with the tac light mouted on it he will have my respect. The dog is positioned so he will see the coon when the coon gets down on the flat area and not 4 foot from the hill edge where he was last night (the dogs could see him when he was past the house and at the porch ready to go west - tonight he will be seen way before that). When he was seen last night he was ready to go over the edge by the porch end and trotted down to the trees with me yelling at him. This way I will have the entire driveway and open flat area to pick the coon off. The dog can come up on the porch and sleep and still be between the house and the area I need to have the coon in. He'll be fine and nothing is impeding him moving from the coon. Some hunters here use them as coon dogs to alert and track. The dog won't let the coon near him. He has tree'd other coons for us and doesn't even try to jump up the tree to get it. He just gives his "I have it tree'd" bark and we go find him and the coon. And all our dogs are up to date on their shots. [​IMG] He had his shots three months ago. Please don't worry about him. He's 60 pounds of dog that won't run to the coon to attack.

    I was interested in coon habits. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2008
  4. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

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    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    Well, to give you more information. Coons can use their paws just as well as you can use your fingers, they can open locks and latches with ease most of the time, they are tenacious and are very smart at getting what they want...i.e. your chickens. But they are also easily trapped. [​IMG]

    As long as you are close enough and a good shot, the 12 ga will do just fine. [​IMG]
     
  5. chicken_coop

    chicken_coop New Egg

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    Oct 6, 2008
    Ohio
    Coons are good climbers and can squeeze thru very small openings in a pen or coop. I have had coons reach thru wire and grab a chicken off the roost pole and kill them thru the wire.
    Coons are easily live trapped. I would recommend using tuna or canned cat food to bait the trap.
    Coons will only fight a dog if cornered or caught on the ground. Most of the time they will climb up the nearest tree if the dog is fast enough to outrun him. Make sure you have a good bright high-beam light to shine him with up in the tree. His eyes should glow like big yellow diamonds when he looks at the light. Use a shotgun with #4 or # 6 shot and aim for his head. Otherwise he will bail out and your dogs will have to finish the job.
    Good luck
     
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2008

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