On their way up to crap on the roof (Image: Wilson Lee)

The raccoons are back in my neighbourhood, and I can already hear thousands of Torontonians muttering into their beers and wondering how to manage – or, let’s face it, get rid of – the city’s raccoons. A large family is dividing its time between where I live and the house next door; this photo shows part of their commute.

It’s not surprising that Toronto – the world’s raccoon capital – is home to raccoons so intelligent, nimble and sneaky that they can use power lines to get around.

The city’s web site has a lot of information on how to try to get the raccoons out of your garbage, green bin, lawn, chimney, barbeque, patio furniture, etc. But there appears to be an unconditional surrender from the city when it comes to doing anything to reduce the raccoon population. The raccoon that moves out of your neighbour’s shed will just move into yours. Depending on where you live, you might spend half your week defending your  house and garden against raccoons.

Here’s a question for city hall: Can raccoons in this city be trapped, neutered, and then released? Or would it that cost more than a city hall bike station?

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