Are raccoons taking over your backyard and raiding your trash cans?
Don’t let these masked bandits ruin your peace of mind any longer!
In this post, I’m going to show you the best ways to get rid of raccoons, so you can reclaim your property and enjoy your outdoor space again.
Whether you’re a homeowner, a landlord, or a business owner, these tips and tricks will help you deal with raccoons in a humane and effective way.
Here are 22 best ways to get rid of raccoons and outsmart those pesky critters once and for all!
Twenty Two Ways to Get Rid of Raccoons
- Secure your trash bins or garbage cans
- Use a fence around your yard or garden
- Raccoon proof your bird feeders
- Keep your yard clean and remove nesting sites
- Use motion activated sprinklers
- Use sound deterrent devices
- Use motion activated lights
- Use ultrasonic animal repellent devices
- Prune or cut your trees
- Use a baffle or collar around your fruit trees
- Pick up fallen fruits and nuts
- Remove food and water sources
- Bring in pet food from outside
- Keep your lawn free of grubs and other pests
- Secure your roof from holes or entry points
- Secure your chimney
- Secure areas under porches and decks
- Cover Koi ponds with netting
- Use ammonia to deter raccoons
- Spray wolf or coyote urine around the perimeter
- Trap and relocate raccoons
- Call a wildlife removal expert
How To Keep Raccoons Off Your Property
Raccoons, known for their distinctive masks and destructive behavior, have adapted to thrive in both rural and urban environments across North America.
These opportunistic mammals are not shy around humans and often seek out sources of food and shelter in residential areas.
Once a raccoon has discovered a reliable food source, they will return frequently, raiding trash cans, gardens, and even entering homes through garages and attics. Getting rid of raccoons can be a challenge, but there are various effective and humane methods to do so.
Here are the best ways to address a raccoon problem:
Secure Your Trash Bins Or Garbage Cans
Raccoons are known for their dexterity and problem-solving abilities, which allows them to easily get into trash bins. They are able to open lids, tear through plastic bags, and even chew through metal or plastic containers to access food scraps and other attractants.
Raccoons are also opportunistic animals and are attracted to easy meals, so if a bin is left unsecured, they will take the opportunity to raid it.
Additionally, raccoons are good climbers, they can climb up the side of a trash can and tip it over to get the trash out.
To keep Raccoons out of your garbage barrels, make sure the lid is properly sealed or secured.
You may want to use a Trash Can Lid Lock to keep them from getting into you bins and making a mess. You can find numerous lid locks on Amazon.
Also store your bins in a secure location such as a shed or garage and only bring out the garbage bins on the morning of trash day to cut off this as a food source.
These steps can help keep raccoons out of your property and reduce the chances of them raiding your trash cans.
Use A Fence Around Your Yard Or Garden
Another way to protect your property or garden from raccoons is to build or install a sturdy fence around it.
A fence made of wood, metal or mesh can be effective in keeping raccoons out of your garden.
However, it’s important to note that raccoons are great climbers and intelligent animals and may find ways to bypass the fence or find other ways to access the food.
Another type of fence to keep raccoons out of your garden, is to install an electrical fence, which delivers a mild shock to raccoons when they come into contact with it.
This is great option for protecting , fruit trees, vegetable gardens and even chicken coops. It can act as a deterrent and over time will teach raccoons to avoid certain areas of your property.
Raccoon-Proof Your Bird Feeders
Raccoons are known to raid bird feeders for seeds and nuts. Making sure the feeders are inaccessible to raccoons can help keep them away.
A pole with a baffle will deter raccoons from stealing food from the bird feeder, however as I shared earlier, raccoons are very intelligent and great climbers.
They will come up with creative ways to get to food. Also, they can climb up a very thin pole.
Here is a short video of a raccoon stealing bird seed from a baffled bird feeder.
A baffle may not be enough to do the trick. What, I recommend using a hot sauce to mix with the bird feed.
The hot sauce does not affect birds. But squirrels and raccoons will learn very quickly not to eat from your bird feeder. You can make your own or the best brand I recommend is Coles Hot Pepper Sauce.
Keep Your Yard Clean And Remove Nesting Sites
Raccoons are opportunistic animals that thrive in environments that provide them with shelter and hiding places.
They prefer to make their dens in areas such as hollow trees, attics, chimneys, under decks and sheds or even abandoned vehicles.
Removing potential shelter and hiding places can make your property less attractive to raccoons.
This can include sealing off entry points, cleaning up wood piles, trimming trees, bushes and removing any debris or clutter from your yard.
Additionally, remove any standing water in bins or other debris that could be a collection point for rain water.
By eliminating standing water, potential shelter and hiding places, you can make it less likely for raccoons to establish a den on your property and make it less attractive for them to visit.
Use Motion-Activated Sprinklers
These devices can startle raccoons and discourage them from entering your property.
Motion-activated animal repellent sprinklers is a great solution for keeping unwanted critters out of your yard.
This device is designed to naturally repel a wide variety of nuisance animals, including birds, cats, chipmunks, deer, dogs, groundhogs, opossums, rabbits, raccoons, skunks, and squirrels.
Repellent sprinklers detect and deters animals with a startling surge of water.
The infrared sensor detects animal heat and movement, triggering the device to spray the invader, and conditions them to avoid the area in the future.
Most devices comes with sensitivity settings that allow you to adjust for your target animal and can also double as a regular sprinkler.
A Motion-activated sprinkler is easy to set up can be placed in any area of your yard and is a great option for getting rid of raccoons.
Use Sound Deterrent Devices
Scaring off critters with noise can be an effective method. While some people suggest using a radio in the garden, a motion-activated sound device may be a more efficient option.
These devices can be powered by battery or solar energy, and are ideal for placing in areas where raccoons might enter.
The motion-activated sound device emit high-pitched sounds that raccoons find unpleasant, which can scare them away and help keep them out of your property.
However, one downside to sound devices is that raccoons are nocturnal and tend to be active at night, which means that the sound may disturb you or your neighbors while you sleep.
An alternative solution is to use other motion-activated devices such as sprinklers, lights or ultrasonic deterrents.
Use motion-activated lights
Motion-activated lights can be an effective way to deter raccoons from approaching your property.
One of the benefits of using motion-activated lights is that they can be solar-powered, which means they won’t add to your energy bill and they can save energy.
Many motion-activated lights come with super bright LEDs and high-efficiency, which can cover a large area and offer more light coverage. Additionally, it’s important to look for motion-activated lights that are IP65 waterproof, which can help them function well even in heavy rain and snowstorms.
One of the most important features of motion-activated lights is the motion sensor.
This feature is perfect for outdoor lighting and can be widely used as yard light, garden light, parking lot light, exit light, entrance light, driveway light, patio light, entryway light, and double as an effective Raccoon deterrent.
Motion-activated lights can also startle raccoons and make them less likely to approach your property, as they’re triggered by movement, they can also deter raccoons and other animals by providing a sudden burst of light which can be disorienting or scary for them.
Use Ultrasonic Animal Repellent Devices
Ultrasonic devices are a humane and effective way to deter raccoons and other pests from your property. These devices emit high-frequency sounds that are inaudible to humans but can be heard by raccoons and other animals. These sounds can be unpleasant to raccoons and can help keep them away.
Ultrasonic animal repellers are highly effective in scaring and driving away a wide range of animals, including deer, wild boars, rats, mice, squirrels, raccoons, and other pests.
They send out infrasonic and ultrasonic waves as well as alarm sounds and strobe light when their motion is triggered, effectively scaring the animals away without hurting them.
Most ultrasonic animal repellers are designed to be weatherproof and durable, so they can withstand any weather conditions and hold up well over time. Additionally, they’re solar-powered, which means they’re low-cost and produce no pollution, making them ideal for areas with poor or no power conditions.
Using an ultrasonic device is easy, most are simple to set up, and some even come with a setting for raccoons specifically. Pick one with a setting for raccoons to be most effective. With an ultrasonic device, you can enjoy a raccoon-free environment without causing harm to the animals.
Prune Or Cut Your Trees And Shrubs
Raccoons often use trees as a means of getting to your property, by pruning or cutting trees that are close to your property, you can make it harder for raccoons to access your property.
Raccoons use trees for safety, they will climb them to keep them away from predators and gain access to yards, gardens, roofs, sheds, and chimneys.
Once on your roof, they will look for entry points to create a den. To effectively deter raccoons, it’s important to trim overhanging branches and branches that are too close to your roof line where they may be able to gain access.
Trees with thick brush may become nesting areas for raccoons, properly pruning and thinning trees will help to prevent them from nesting in your yard.
Additionally, thick shrubs may also be a good area for raccoons to create a den, make sure shrubs are well-maintained and trimmed to prevent them from nesting.
By keeping your trees and shrubs trimmed, you can make it harder for raccoons to access your property and reduce the likelihood of them creating a den.
Use A Baffle Or Collar Around Your Fruit Trees
Protecting fruit trees from raccoons is essential to ensure that you get to enjoy the fruits of your labor.
One of the most effective ways to do this is by using a baffle.
A cylindrical baffle is a great option to keep pesky squirrels away but may not always work for keeping raccoons from getting onto your fruit trees.
Raccoons are persistent and eventually will get around the Disk baffle.
Instead for raccoons you will have to use flashing material to create a physical barrier around the tree, making it difficult for raccoons to climb and access the fruit.
A collar can be purchased on Amazon to fit a 4 inch square post which works great for custom bird feeders however you can make your own collars made from galvanized pipe or roll of aluminum flashing.
This creates a physical barrier around the tree that raccoons cannot climb or chew through. The flashing can also be used to protect bird feeders from raccoons.
Installing a baffle or flashing on a fruit tree is quick and easy. You can purchase aluminum flashing or galvanized steel metal at any home improvement store.
To be most effective, it’s recommended to install a minimum of 24 inches to deter raccoons.
The metal flashing is durable and can withstand the elements, making it a great long-term solution for protecting fruit trees. Keep fruit trees protected from raccoons with a baffle or flashing.
Here is an example of using aluminum flashing to wrap the tree to prevent raccoons from climbing in the video below.
Pick Up Fallen Fruits And Nuts
Raccoons are attracted to fruits and nuts, so it’s important to pick them up as soon as they fall to the ground to prevent raccoons from being attracted to your property.
Raccoons are opportunistic feeders and will eat almost anything they can find, and fallen fruits and nuts are a perfect food source for them.
If left on the ground, fallen fruits and nuts can attract raccoons to your property and make it more likely that they will start to raid your garden or orchard.
To prevent raccoons from being attracted to your property, it’s recommended to pick up fallen fruits and nuts on a regular schedule.
This can be done daily, weekly, or even more frequently depending on the number of trees and fruits you have on your property.
By picking up fallen fruits and nuts on a regular schedule, you can remove the food source that is attracting raccoons to your property and reduce the likelihood of them raiding your garden or orchard.
Additionally, it’s important to be diligent in picking up all the fallen fruits and nuts, even the small ones that might not be noticeable.
Raccoons have a keen sense of smell and will be able to detect even small amounts of fallen fruits or nuts. By regularly cleaning up fallen fruits and nuts, you can keep raccoons from becoming a problem on your property.
What Types Of Fruit And Nuts Do Raccoons Eat
Some of the fruits and nuts that raccoons commonly eat include:
- Apples: Raccoons enjoy eating apples and will often raid apple trees in search of the fruit.
- Berries: Raccoons are known to eat a variety of berries including blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries.
- Cherries: Raccoons will eat cherries if they have access to cherry trees.
- Grapes: Raccoons are known to eat grapes and will often raid grapevines in search of the fruit.
- Peaches: Raccoons will eat peaches if they have access to peach trees.
- Pears: Raccoons will eat pears if they have access to pear trees.
- Plums: Raccoons will eat plums if they have access to plum trees.
- Nuts: Raccoons are known to eat a variety of nuts such as acorns, walnuts, almonds, and hickory nuts.
- Persimmons: Raccoons will eat persimmons if they have access to persimmon trees.
- Citrus fruits: Raccoons will eat citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, and limes if they have access to citrus trees.
It’s important to note that raccoons will eat almost anything they can find, they may eat other types of fruits and nuts that are not listed here.
Remove Food And Water Sources
Raccoons are attracted to food and water and removing these sources from your property can help deter them from approaching or living on your property.
Raccoons will eat almost anything they can find, including human food, pet food, birdseed, and even insects.
They are also attracted to standing water such as bird baths, ponds, and fountains.
To remove sources of food and water from your property, it’s important to take a few steps.
- First, make sure to remove any containers that accumulate rainwater.
- Second, make sure any areas of your property that hold standing water are properly drained.
- Third, make sure to clear away any leftovers from picnics or outdoor meals to prevent raccoons from being attracted to your property.
- Finally, make sure to remove or cover any standing water sources such as bird baths, ponds, and fountains.
By removing sources of food and water from your property, you can make it less attractive to raccoons, and they will be less likely to approach or live on your property. It’s important to note that raccoons are clever animals, so it’s important to be consistent in removing food and water sources and to be aware of potential new sources of food and water that may arise.
Bring In Pet Food From Outside
As pet owners, we all love to spoil our furry friends and make sure they are well-fed, even if that means leaving their food outside for them to nibble on.
However, this can be a problem when it comes to raccoons, as they are attracted to pet food and will often raid bowls left outside at night in search of a tasty snack.
But don’t worry, you can still treat your pet to their favorite meals while keeping raccoons away. The key is to bring in pet food from outside at night.
This simple step can prevent raccoons from becoming a problem on your property and keep your pet’s food safe. Plus, it’s an opportunity to bond with your pet and give them some extra love and attention as you bring in their food.
So, whether you’re treating your cat to a bowl of kibble or your dog to some delicious wet food, remember to bring in their food from outside at night. Not only will it keep raccoons away, but it’ll also give you and your pet some extra bonding time.
Keep Your Lawn Free Of Grubs And Other Pests
Raccoons have a diverse diet and may show a preference for certain types of food.
They are known to consume insects, amphibians, fruits, nuts, and even small mammals. They are also known to scavenge human garbage and eat a wide range of foods.
In seasons when food is readily available, raccoons tend to prefer fruits and nuts such as acorns and berries.
However, when the opportunity arises, they will resort to insects such as grubs, as they are a good source of food for raccoons.
Raccoons often dig up lawns in search of grubs and other pests. Keeping your lawn free of these pests can help reduce the chances of raccoons digging in your lawn..
Secure Your Roof From Holes Or Entry Points
Keeping raccoons off your roof is an essential step in preventing them from accessing and living in your attic.
Raccoons are expert climbers and are known to find their way into roofs and attics through holes, gaps, and other entry points.
To keep raccoons off your roof, it’s essential to inspect your roof for any potential entry points and take steps to close them off.
One of the most effective ways to keep raccoons off your roof is to close off all access to your roof. This can be done by closing patching holes, installing screens, or using other materials to block entry points, closing gaps in the roof, eaves, and other areas that raccoons may be able to access.
Another effective method of keeping raccoons off your roof is to trim any trees that are near or overhang your roof line. Raccoons are great climbers and will even climb aluminum gutters to access the roof to find nesting areas. By trimming trees, you can make it more difficult for raccoons to access your roof and reduce the chances of them nesting in your attic.
Additionally, you can install spike strips or other devices that can deter raccoons from climbing onto your roof. These devices can make it difficult for raccoons to climb onto your roof and can be an effective solution for preventing them from accessing your attic.
It’s important to note that raccoons are persistent animals, and it may take multiple attempts to keep them off your roof. However, by following these tips, you can significantly reduce the chances of raccoons nesting in your attic and causing damage to your home.
Secure Your Chimney
Raccoons are always on the lookout for suitable shelters.
One of the common areas where they take shelter is in and around chimneys as they can easily gain entry to attics through gaps in the chimney.
To prevent raccoons from taking shelter in your chimney and getting into your attic, it’s important to inspect your chimney for gaps and close them off.
One effective solution to keep raccoons out of your chimney is to install a chimney cap.
A chimney cap is a metal covering that fits over the top of your chimney and prevents raccoons and other animals from entering. Not only will it keep raccoons out, but it will also keep debris, rain, and snow from entering your chimney, which can cause damage over time.
It’s also worth to mention that raccoons can cause damage to the chimney and can cause fire hazards. By keeping raccoons out of the chimney, you can protect your home from potential damage and safety hazards.
In summary, by inspecting for gaps around your chimney and installing a chimney cap, you can effectively prevent raccoons from taking shelter inside your chimney and entering your attic.
Secure Areas Under Porches and Decks
Raccoons are known to seek shelter in areas that provide them with cover and protection.
Under porches and decks are one of the common spots where raccoons take shelter as they offer a safe and shady place for them to hide.
To keep raccoons from taking shelter under your porch or deck, it’s important to identify and seal off any points of entry they may be using.
However, it’s important to note that raccoons tend to be persistent and evicting them from an area that has provided them with safety may prove to be difficult.
In such cases, it may be necessary to use other methods such as trapping and relocating the animal.
By identifying and sealing off entry points, you can prevent raccoons from taking shelter under your porch or deck. But if raccoons continue to return, it may be necessary to seek professional help to safely trap and relocate them.
To keep raccoons from taking shelter under your porch or deck, it’s important to identify and seal off entry points, and if necessary, to seek professional help to safely trap and relocate them.
Cover Koi Ponds With Netting
In recent years, garden ponds have become a popular landscaping feature for many homeowners.
A Koi fish pond, lily pond or natural rock waterfall can add a beautiful and tranquil addition to any garden.
Not only are they visually pleasing, but for many people, maintaining a Koi fish pond can be a valuable hobby.
However, garden ponds can also present a great attraction for raccoons, who are often drawn to the water and food sources they provide.
To reduce the chances of attracting raccoons, it’s important to install pond netting. Pond netting can be placed over the surface of the pond and will keep raccoons and other animals out.
In addition to keeping raccoons out, pond netting also helps to keep debris, leaves and other unwanted materials out of the pond, which can make maintenance easier.
To reduce the chances of attracting raccoons install pond netting over the surface of the pond.
Use Ammonia To Deter Raccoons
Ammonia is a clear, pungent chemical compound that is commonly used as a cleaning agent and industrial solvent.
Its strong odor can be used as a natural deterrent for raccoons and other wildlife.
Raccoons have an acute sense of smell and the strong smell of ammonia can be unpleasant to them, causing them to avoid an area. This makes ammonia an effective tool for keeping raccoons away from specific areas such as gardens, trash cans, and ponds.
Additionally, raccoons have been known to be repelled by the smell of urine, as it can signal the presence of a predator. Since ammonia is found in human an animal urine, it can also be used to deter raccoons.
To use ammonia as a deterrent, I recommend to saturate rags or cotton balls with ammonia and place it in areas where raccoons are known to frequent. Be sure to use caution when using ammonia as it can be harmful to humans, pets, and plants if used in large concentrations.
Spray Wolf or Coyote Urine Around The Perimeter
Spraying wolf or coyote urine around the perimeter of your yard can be an effective way to deter raccoons.
This is because the scent of these predators serves as a natural repellent for raccoons, as they recognize the smell as a potential threat and will avoid the area.
Additionally, using rags or urine tags soaked in the urine and placed around and under porches, decks or specific areas, such as fruit trees or bird feeders, can further enhance the deterrent effect.
This method is a natural and non-toxic way to keep raccoons away from your property without causing harm to the animal.
However, it’s important to note that predator urine has a strong and unpleasant scent and may not be something you enjoy smelling around your property.
Trap And Relocate Raccoons
Trapping raccoons to relocate them is a common and humane method used by homeowners and wildlife control professionals to remove raccoons from their property.
However, it is important to check local laws in your area before trapping raccoons, as some states have regulations that must be followed.
Large traps are ideal for capturing raccoons, and it is important to make sure that the traps are scent-free, so use gloves when handling them.
The traps should be set in shaded areas to prevent harm to the raccoon from the heat and direct sunlight. Use bait such as cat or dog food can be used to attract the raccoons to the traps.
Once the raccoon is trapped, it should be relocated at least 10-15 miles away to avoid the raccoon returning to its original location.
If the trapped raccoon is a female, extra precautions should be taken to ensure there are no nesting babies as they will not survive if the mother is relocated.
Call A Wildlife Removal Expert
If you are unable to get rid of raccoons by yourself, you can hire a wildlife removal expert.
These professionals have the tools, experience and knowledge to safely and humanely remove raccoons from your property.
Wildlife Removal Experts or Technicians, also known as Wildlife Removal Specialists, have experience in removing all types of wild animals from your property, including bats, birds, raccoons, groundhogs, bees, squirrels, snakes, armadillos, skunks, moles, opossums, and more.
In most cases, you will not need the services of a Wildlife Removal Expert, but if you have a raccoon problem your cant seem to get rid of or if a raccoon is in your attic, chimney, or under a crawl space or patio, an expert may be necessary to help you.
The cost of different wildlife removal jobs can vary greatly. A simple job, such as trapping and removing a raccoon from your property, may be as low as $150. However, more complex jobs, such as removing a mother raccoon with young from the attic, along with repairs and attic cleanup, after the exclusion and removal can cost upwards of $400 or more.
Conclusion For The Best Ways to Get Rid of Raccoons
In summary, getting rid of raccoons requires a comprehensive approach to prevent them from accessing your property.
This includes inspecting your roof and home for entry points, closing off access, trimming trees, and fixing or sealing off points of shelter under porches or decks.
Additionally, reducing food sources and installing pond netting for garden ponds can help deter raccoons.
If preventative measures do not work, trapping and relocating the animal may be necessary. However, it is important to check local laws before taking this step.
If you are unable to get rid of raccoons on your own, seeking help from a wildlife removal expert may be the best option