Thursday, April 22, 2010

Our First Guests...

Caroline, my 10 year old, and I were enjoying the spectacular wildlife of Pawley’s Island. She called me out to watch a beautiful pair of Bald Eagles fish off of the dock. We caught fat blue crabs and anything else careless enough to get in the crab trap. We noted muddy raccoon tracks all over the dock and traced the footsteps all the way up to –oh great! – our house.

That night, Caroline and I were awakened at about 1:00AM by what sounded like a massive cat fight under our bed. The racket was coming from under the floor near the air conditioning vent. After a few minutes I decided that mother raccoon must have gone out for her nocturnal feeding and her babies were squabbling in her absence. Caroline rolled over and went back to sleep with the complete confidence that mama would take care of the interruption. However, the party continued until about 5:00AM.

The next morning we visited our friends at the hardware store and acquired a Have-a-heart trap and a can of sardines. No luck. On day 3 of the siege my husband arrived. After old man Taylor was jolted out of bed by the ruckus, he finally admitted that I was not just hearing “wind off the marsh”; Enter Paul from Nuisance Wildlife.

After a meticulous inspection that revealed no evidence of raccoon, Paul began examining the duct work with this contraption that looked like a colonoscope. We were pondering the scope when Emma yelped, “Oh snap! Got your raccoon right here!” The raccoon was sitting there fat and sassy watching us search for him. Paul caught the critter, determined that it was a male and escorted him off the island. After another night of raccoon domestic discord, Paul returned the next day to evict the rest of the family.

Paul told us that the raccoons like to nest under the houses in early spring and that spring break always brings the busy season for Nuisance Wildlife. “Wind off the marsh” my fanny.

Corinne Taylor

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