Raccoons live or sleep in trees: true or false?

There are many myths surrounding raccoons, largely because they are so popular among us. From their bandit-like mask to their bandit-like behavior, they have cemented their presence in our conscious. For instance, it is widely believed that they dip their food in water before eating it. While it may be true, it is certainly not true for everything that they eat. That particular characteristic is borne out of living near water sources in the wild, but it’s not a fixed trait that they possess. Similarly, people are divided as to whether raccoons live in trees or not. Aren’t they supposed to live in burrows? Can a raccoon even climb a tree? Let’s explore this very issue in this article.

Can they climb trees?

Naturally, this is the first question in consideration, because if raccoons are unable to do this, then living in trees is not likely. However, as it happens, raccoons are excellent climbers, especially as far as trees are concerned. They have a small body that makes it simpler for them to scale various structures. They have opposable thumbs and claws that enable them to get a good grip on their on the bark and steadily do the climb upwards. They also possess a decent-sized tail that keeps them balanced. Finally, their strong hind legs provide more than enough support for them in this effort. They are longer than their front legs, which gives them a sort of crouched position and also assists them in scaling trees and similar structures. So there you have it. These pesky creatures CAN climb trees. But do they necessarily live there?

A convenient location

Raccoons generally live in burrows, but trees give them a strategic location from where they can catch their prey by surprise and suddenly pounce on them. It is also an ideal place of protection for them from a host of predators, including coyotes and foxes.

A guest house of sorts

Raccoons are in the habit of building intricate crawl spaces around trees, because not only are such spaces suitable substitutes for burrows, but they are also comfortable and convenient. Raccoons which get lost attempt to locate such crawl spaces so that they have a temporary area to settle in for the time being, kind of like how a wayward traveler seeks the light and warmth of a guest house.

Protection from extreme weather

Raccoons will hide under trees or in holes in tree trunks when the weather is particularly harsh. While doing so, they utilize the stored body fat to keep themselves insulated in case it is very cold outside. Raccoons will generally prefer very tall trees (20 feet or greater) with tall branches.

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