Interesting Facts About Raccoons While there are many animals in this country that fill people with wonder, there are few as interesting as the raccoon. This animal, whose English name was given to it by the Native Americans who used to live in what is now Virginia, is highly adaptable and often lives near human habitations. They have become incredibly common in many part of the country in recent years, so it is important that people brush up on their raccoon information. Since the 1940's the countrywide population of raccoons has increased by over 10,000%. Raccoons have a visually distinctive appearance. Everyone knows about the black bandit mask and striped tail that make them such a visually iconic species. One interesting bit of raccoon information is that this mask is also considered by scientists to be visually iconic for the animals themselves. It is thought that it aids them in recognizing faces of other raccoons, which is useful for such a highly sociable species. Their sociability is obvious if you've ever seen a group of raccoons walking together across the road. They generally travel in groups of up to four of a single gender. Because the United States, where Raccoons originated, is rather densely populated, we must pay special attention to raccoons who live here. This is especially true because of the large amount of raccoons who live here. Raccoons' sociability and lack of fear toward humans often leads to dangerous confrontations between us that can lead to rabies being spread from raccoon to person. The population density of the state often exacerbates tensions because it means there are more people confronting raccoons in smaller areas than in other parts of the country. Raccoons have been known to be carriers of rabies, which makes it especially important to understand what we can about raccoon information to ensure we can live alongside each other peacefully. The most important step to understanding raccoon information is to know that raccoons share something major with humans: their ability to eat anything. Because of this, and the fact that they are much less finicky than we are, they are strongly attracted to our garbage. We must be sure to cap our garbage cans to ensure raccoons don't smell the remains of food inside. This is especially true here because it will ensure humans and raccoons can get along without confrontation. Besides their desire to eat everything, raccoons share other features with humans, such as their tendency to wash their food when in captivity. The reason for this is unknown, however, as wild raccoons have never been witnessed doing it. Because raccoons carry rabies more often than most other animals, it is important to contact an animal control specialist if you see one acting strangely. There are many such people who understand specialized raccoon information that they use to handle these creatures humanely. The reason for doing this is twofold. First, it is very important that an untrained person does not attempt to come in contact with an animal that is infected with rabies, as this might spread rabies from the raccoon to the person. The second reason is that it is important to isolate infected raccoons in order that the disease doesn't spread further in the raccoon community. Rabies epidemics spread incredibly fast, so controlling it quickly is the best solution for both humans and raccoon alike.