About Racoon

The raccoon, scientific name Procyon lotor, is found mainly in North America along with some parts of Mexico, Canada and South America. From rainforest to city streets, these scrappy mammals will live almost anywhere.

They are most recognisable by the mask-like black fur around their eyes and light and dark rings around their tail. The rest of their bodies are covered in grey-brown fur. They can grow up to 95 centimetres long and 10kg in weight.

Raccoons are omnivores and very flexible eaters. Their diet is determined by their environment and can include frogs, fish, insects, mice and plants. They tend to gorge on food in the warmer months and sleep for most of winter.

Raccoons are nocturnal mammals who communicate through a variety of hisses, growls and whistles.

Besides the common northern raccoon there are six other species of racoon who mostly live on islands. In the wild, raccoons only live for 2 or 3 years.

Females give birth to between one and seven young, generally in a tree hole or log. Young raccoons are called kits.

Scroll through the videos, photos and articles below to find out more about raccoons.


Never miss a Nat Geo moment

Your email address
We use our own and third-party cookies to improve our services, personalise your advertising and remember your preferences. If you continue browsing, or click on the accept button on this banner, we understand that you accept the use of cookies on our website. For more information visit our Cookies Policy AcceptClose cookie policy overlay