Raccoons might seem cuddly and cute, but they can become a major nuisance when they get into your home. These scavenging mammals sometimes make their way inside residential buildings while looking for shelter during fall and winter. Learn more about them, and keep in mind that you’ll need professional South Carolina raccoon control if they get into your home.

Physical Appearance

It’s pretty easy to identify a raccoon when you see one. These mammals have a distinctive mask-like pattern on their face and a black and gray striped tail. When they’re adults, they can grow to be up to 10 inches high at the shoulder and weigh up to 12 pounds. They also have long, sharp claws that help them forage for food.

Raccoon Habitats

Raccoons prefer living in aquatic environments, such as near marshes or ponds. However, these animals have adapted to living close to humans in wooded areas, so you might find them in unexpected places. Raccoons are actually found all over the U.S., including along South Carolina’s coastal areas. You’re less likely to see them as you head farther inland in the state.

Raccoon Diet

What do raccoons tend to feed on? These mammals have a varied diet that ranges from frogs and waterfowl to garbage outside of homes. They also feed on carrion, acorns and berries. Raccoons can cause problems for farmers as well, since their diet includes watermelons, corn and other crops grown in SC. When raccoons eat acorns, amphibians and birds, they’re not much of a problem for humans. Their tendency to dig through trash cans or invade crops makes them a nuisance to homeowners and farmers.

Raccoon Activity in SC

Raccoons typically breed during January and February, and their young remain in their den until late fall. Once the later part of fall arrives, young raccoons tend to leave their mother and find their own territory. Raccoons might not be much of a concern during the warmer parts of the year, but they can become a problem when it starts getting cold out.

These animals sometimes claw their way into residential buildings, where they seek warmth and shelter throughout the winter months. Being in your home also provides them with easy access to food sources in your trash cans.

Problems with Raccoons

Raccoons can do a significant amount of damage to SC homes, which is why it’s important to have South Carolina raccoon control professionals handle them. They can damage wood and other materials with their sharp claws as they make themselves at home.

Raccoons can also put humans and pets at risk of diseases, such as rabies, and they can attack with their teeth and claws if they feel threatened. Homeowners should not attempt to get rid of raccoons on their own, since they could end up being injured. Instead, professional raccoon control experts should safely remove them.

Handling Raccoon Problems

When raccoons have taken up residence in your home, garage, shed or another part of your property, you should get help from South Carolina raccoon control experts as soon as you can. These experts have the equipment and knowledge to remove raccoons from your SC property, so that you’re not putting yourself at risk.

After raccoons have been removed from your home, you should take steps to prevent them from coming back. This involves checking around your home’s exterior for openings that they can get in through. Seal these up to stop raccoons from being able to get back in. Keeping your trash cans tightly sealed can also deter raccoons from coming onto your property to forage through your garbage.

If raccoons are giving you a headache in your SC home, contact Island Pest Control. We have a team of highly skilled pest control experts available to provide you with South Carolina raccoon control in the Hilton Head area.