If you have found a lost baby raccoon, raised it in your home for some time, and are thinking of sending it back to the wild, you should know the appropriate age to do it. According to the rehabilitators, the age for releasing a home-raised baby raccoon back to the jungle is between sixteen to twenty-four weeks. However, we recommend doing it in between twenty to thirty weeks.
How To Tell A Raccoon’s Age?
After birth, the eyes and ears of a baby raccoon remain closed for a few days. They cannot stand up or walk but can simply crawl with spread-out legs. It will weigh around a hundred grams and measure four to six inches from nose to tail. They will have very light fur and a faint mask on their face. They will have pigmented tail rings coming out at the age of one week.
What Does a One Week Old Baby Raccoon Look Like?
When they become one week old, the faint mask beneath the eyes of a baby raccoon begins to show up and their head will seem to be larger than the body. The pigmented tail rings began to appear and their weight is around one hundred and fifty grams or less. They are still not able to stand up or walk and are normally from five to seven inches long.
What Does a Three To Four Weeks Old Baby Raccoon Look Like?
At the age of three to four weeks, the weight of the baby raccoons can be around two hundred and fifty grams and they can normally measure eight to ten inches from nose to tail. They are now able to stand up on their legs and have learned to walk slowly. However, they will not leave the nest yet but sometimes can be seen moving around the den although they will not go far away.
What Does a Six Weeks Old Baby Raccoon Look Like?
When the baby raccoons become six weeks old, they are extremely vocal. Whenever they feel disturbed, the kits can make alerts like snorting, hissing, and growling sounds. During this period they can weigh around five hundred grams and measure from twelve to fourteen inches long. They can now walk faster, run and even climb. Now they start leaving the den following their mother.
At What Age Are Baby Raccoons Weaned?
At the age of eight to ten weeks, the raccoon babies are weaned. They can now eat solid food like the grown-up ones. Smelts, chicks, and rice have become some of their favorite foods now. The weaning of raccoons does not indicate merely a change of food but it means that they are independent now. They can now search for their own food, protect themselves, and lead a life on their own.
The baby raccoons start to leave the den at the age of six months following their mother to go to another shelter. When they are eight to ten weeks old, they are now almost grown-ups and start eating solid food. However, they will not leave the nest and wait till the fall. Thereafter, they will disperse during the fall or the following spring days. They can also stay till the spring season.