The International Raccoon Appreciation Day is a holiday in honor of the cute raccoons, which are considered by many to be harmful or annoying, but are actually an important part of our ecosystem.
The raccoon lives mainly in North America and Europe. In the US many of them can be found in urban areas.
Raccoon Appreciation Day is designed to teach us about the benefits that raccoons bring to the ecosystem and how they are beneficial to the environment: they help maintain cleanliness because they eat carrion, they prevent the culture of harmful animals by eating them, they scatter seeds of nuts and fruits as they eat and thus spread them .
The idea to create a special day in honor of the raccoons was proposed by a girl from California in 2002. She saw that although many refer to raccoons as a nuisance, there are also those who love them and want to keep them. In the United States even raccoons are allowed to be kept as pets and many people adopt them. She decided to create this day to show the positive sides that raccoons have and the role they play in the ecosystem. At first the day was celebrated only in the United States and in the following years the idea was adopted by more countries in the world and it became International Raccoon Evaluation Day.
Raccoons live in a diverse climate, and in rural, urban and suburban areas. Despite the loss of their habitats in the wild, their population continued to grow in North America.
Six species of raccoons live in North and South America. The Common Raccoon is the most common species of raccoon in North America. Other raccoons live in the more southern regions such as the Crab-eating raccoon that lives in Central and South America, and the pygmy raccoon (Cozumel raccoon) that lives only on the island of Cozumel west of the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico. The pygmy raccoon is in serious danger of extinction in the wild because of all sorts of human developments that have increased tourism and thus reduced its habitats and also because of illegal hunting.
Raccoons are omnivores that eat both animals and plants. Among their foods are turtles, snails, worms, rabbits, waterfowl, frogs, nesting birds, eggs, mollusks, compost, grains, seeds, nuts, fruits and vegetables. On the one hand they help get rid of garbage and on the other hand they also steal pet food in residential areas.
Raccoons have many receptors on their hands that allow them to identify their food through the sense of touch without seeing it and also to find food in streams. When they wash their hands before eating, the water stimulates the nerve endings in them and they feel better about their food. This is why the raccoon is also called a "washing bear". Even when the raccoons are eating, they are constantly busy holding and feeling their food.
The black "mask" around their eyes is known to help them see better because it absorbs light and reduces glare. Raccoons reach a length of 40 to 70 cm and a weight of 4 to 26 kg.
|Raccoon as a pet (source)
Raccoons tend to live in burrows in trees or caves, but also in barns and abandoned buildings.
Raccoons are nocturnal creatures that sleep during the day, and in the winter months they sleep much longer, although they do not go into hibernation like bears.
The birth period of raccoons is in early summer. Their launch contains one to seven raccoons for pregnancy. They live up to 7-16 weeks with their mothers. At the age of 8 months to a year they become completely independent.
How to celebrate International Raccoon Appreciation Day?
On International Raccoon Day, you will learn about raccoons. You can go visit zoos to see them or even adopt a raccoon as a pet. You can watch movies starring raccoons like Over The Hedge of Dreamworkds or the Japanese movie Pom Poko. You can watch funny movies with raccoons on Youtube. You can draw or color raccoons. You can find a lot of things to do with raccoons this day but the most important thing is that you will appreciate these lovely animals!