NY1 For You: Raccoon Problem Pushes Brooklyn Couple To The Brink
Some raccoons are making life for residents in one section of Brooklyn very uncomfortable. NY1’s Susan Jhun has the details in the following NY1 for You report.
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Whether it's the fresh tomatoes in their thriving garden or the booming construction in their Greenwood Heights neighborhood, Aaron Brashear and Mic Holwin say something is attracting these crafty raccoons to their home.
“There could be 10 or 15 in a busy night, and that’s just [our home] in these two or three houses,” says Brashear. “Folks up the block have a completely different group of raccoons that they’re dealing with.”
The couple says the raccoon population seems to have grown in numbers and boldness since last summer.
“There’s claw marks all the way down the screens, and we see that there’s paw prints,” Brashear says.
“You know, there’s only a very thin mesh separating you from an animal that wants to come in and is carrying all sorts of nasty things,” says Holwin.
Among the “nasty things” raccoons can carry are rabies and roundworm, which is found in the feces.
“On a percentage level from one to 10, last year would have been somewhat of a four, now it is close to a seven,” says Giovanni Danesi of Critter Ridder of New York.
The couple hired trapper Danesi at considerable cost to them since the city offers no assistance in catching the intruders.
“There’s no resource available unless the animal seems to be rabid, and at that point, you’re calling 911 and wasting those resources,” says Brashear.
“If you call 311, doesn’t matter, they’ll say hire a trapper, which is what we did,” adds Holwin. “We’re putting this on credit cards, we don’t have the money.
NY1 called The Department of Health, which released the following statement:
"Wildlife is a feature of every habitat, including New York City, and raccoons naturally live in the wooded areas of the city. Nuisance
raccoon complaints generally increase in the summer and the Health Department is receiving the usual number of complaints received this time of year. If a resident considers a raccoon on their property to be a nuisance, they should contact a licensed private trapper to remove it."
The typical response which Brashear says ignores the serious, growing problem of urban raccoons.
The couple hopes the city will consider subsidizing a program to trap the raccoons and educate New Yorkers on the increasing threat.
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