Below is a transcript of the video.
Storyteller: In 2016, Toronto spent $ 31 million to defend itself against a raccoon invasion. The masked bugs were everywhere, pooping on the porches, stopping traffic and infesting attics, and not just taking over Toronto. Reports of raccoon vandalism have plagued cities like Portland, Chicago and New York City, and as the cities surrounded by raccoons know, we can not seem to stop them.
Between the 1930s and 1980s, the raccoon population of the United States multiplied by twenty, and it is still strong. From 2014 to 2015, raccoon complaints in Brooklyn almost doubled, so how do these masked bandits in the big cities?
Well, to begin with, they can digest almost anything from fish and acorns in the forest to dog food and pizza on the street, and like humans, raccoons tend to prefer pizza, which is why they move from the forest to the city in the first place.
In Brooklyn, for example, captured raccoons are sometimes relocated to Prospect Park and nearby forests, but wildlife biologists report that they often return to the streets of the city, which are full of garbage dumps.
It is almost impossible to stop them, as Toronto discovered after spending millions on raccoon-proof garbage containers. Unlike traditional containers, the covers had special gravity locks, which open when the arm of a garbage truck turns the container over. The idea was that if they cut off the main food source, they would skip the city, but that did not happen. In fact, a year later, a wildlife control business reported that work related to raccoons had doubled.
Finally, an intelligent raccoon was caught in a chamber that broke the new box. How did he make fun of an entire city? Well, one study after another has revealed that raccoons are considerably smarter than your average-sized average creature. It turns out that raccoon brains have more neurons packed in their brains than other animals of the same size.
In fact, they have the same density of neurons as primates, who are notoriously intelligent, and their clever brains help explain why raccoons can open complex locks, solve puzzles easily and even find solutions to problems that scientists did not think about. Add to that your ultrasensitive hands, er, legs, which have four times more sensory receptors than your feet. This helps them feel subtle textures like special garbage lids in Toronto and even open locks without looking.
And unfortunately for us, keeping them away is a fool's chore. Studies show that after mass removal, populations tend to recover to their previous levels in a year. After all, females can start giving birth at the age of only 1 year and can have up to eight kits in a single year. This rapid reproduction is also the reason why experts say that mass sacrifices are not a long-term solution.
And while they are terribly cute, the damage they can cause is not. When raccoons nest in buildings, they can destroy the insulation, chew wires and make holes in the walls, and it can cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars to repair that kind of damage. A raccoon was even caught destroying more than $ 3,000 in works of art, and only eliminating them can cost between $ 300 and $ 500 per barrel.
In addition, the poop left behind may contain roundworms and other parasites, which can enter your lungs when you breathe or have your pets track you in your home. Worse, raccoons can transmit diseases such as canine distemper and, in rare cases, rabies.
So it's understandable that cities are trying to find some way, in any way, to manage them.
Man in transmission: I can not do anything about it, just chase them away. They return.
Storyteller: If nothing else, it's a lesson learned. We may have built cities, but we do not necessarily govern them.