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Rancho Raccoon

helping wildlife stay wild, healthy and free!

Annua l N ew s l e t t e r Issue No. 1, Fall 2008

Volunteer Opportunity! Relocating “Nuisance” Animals.... Help us help Wildlife!

We’re forming a new on- Discover why trapping and relocating Rancho Raccoon and
site assessment team, and wildlife is not only illegal in California, YUWR always operate on a
we want you to be part but also ineffective and inhumane. shoestring. Without your
of it! Page 2 financial donations, we
Page 2 cannot continue to care for
injured and orphaned
wildlife. Please help!
Page 4
Rabies and Raccoons
Here’s what you need to
know about rabies in
California raccoons. Meet the Volunteers!
Page 2 Read what our volunteers have to say
about providing foster care for raccoons.
Page 3

The Year in
released as the most confident, aggressive juveniles
we’ve ever seen. Hurray for the Fairyland Five!

Hero’s Story

Review Young Hero was our most difficult case this year.
He was brought in as an emaciated, dehydrated
little 2-pound orphan, along with his brother. We

Rancho Raccoon has had a terrific second year.

soon found that he also had a horrific wound on
his back. Somehow he had lost a palm-sized patch
Our website is up and running, our blog of skin, and that’s a lot of skin on a tiny raccoon.
(, full of photos Hero had to be sequestered for a month to allow
and stories about our beautiful clients, is a big hit, and some healing to occur in clean, dry and quiet
as always we provided excellent foster care and circumstances. Thankfully, his wound did not get
medical services to 20 orphaned babies, juvenile and infected, and once it had healed enough, he was
injured adult raccoons. returned to his brother and his new pod-mate, a
One of the young Fairyland banditos, happy young female raccoon named Olivia. Hero’s
A Few Stories: and fat after a week in foster care. squeals of joy at the reunion were the nicest noises I
heard all season!
Our first success happened in May, when an
Orinda homeowner called in distress after seeing a healthy mother, because raccoon mamas are the
panicked mother raccoon run down a tree, leaving experts! The caring homeowners elected to put off For more tales of our furry clients, please see our
four tiny babies in her nest. The homeowners the rest of the tree work until fall. blog,
hadn’t realized that tree-pruning and cutting
The Fairyland Five were a rollicking little group of
should never be done in spring, precisely because
five fat, healthy babies found in Oakland’s
of the possibility of killing, injuring or orphaning
Childrens’ Fairyland. They got some press for
wildlife babies. We counseled the homeowners on
holding up the Fairyland Choo-Choo a couple of
how to re-unite mother and babies, and by the
days after their mother disappeared, sitting on the
following morning all the babies had been taken to
track and crying with distress. Thankfully, Rancho
their new home by their mother. What a relief! We
got the call and before long we had corralled all
would always rather reunite healthy babies with a
those lonely babies, who thrived mightily and were

Rancho Raccoon is a project of Yggdrasil Urban Wildlife Rescue 1

New Volunteer Team!

Yggdrasil/Rancho Raccoon gets many phone calls from Rabies is usually passed to humans via the bite of a Sources:
people who have seen a wild animal who might be in need rabid animal. Occasionally it can be transmitted if discond/Pages/rabies.aspx,
of medical attention, or a possibly-orphaned animal. the saliva of an infected animal gets into a fresh ncidod/diseases/submenus/sub_rabies.htm,
scratch, break in the skin, or contact with mucous
This January, Rancho Raccoon is forming and
membranes (eyes, mouth, nose).
training a core group of excellent volunteers to go
out on wildlife calls and assess possible orphaned or Never touch or approach a wild raccoon, and No Trapping and
injured wildlife situations. always wear gloves if you must handle any wild
animal, even if it is dead. Use a shovel or cardboard
Our volunteers will make every attempt to find and
to move dead animals. Be careful with all animals, Dear Rancho Raccoon: I recently trapped a pesky
visually assess the animal’s state of health and need.
as they can harbor diseases and parasites other than raccoon who has been using the cat door. I dropped it off
If an injured adult animal is involved, they will
rabies. in a nice park, with trees and a lake. Now I find out this
arrange to bring the animal into care, either at the
veterinary hospital or at our main site in Oakland. is illegal. What’s the problem?
Do not pet or play with baby wildlife The common idea that removing one or a few
If the call involves possibly-orphaned babies, the
you’ve rescued. Lots of kind people rescue animals will resolve a wildlife issue is a myth.
volunteers will try to reunite healthy mothers and
babies, or bring the orphans into care in case of
orphaned wildlife, but the desire to cuddle Removing one particular animal that is causing a
and play with the baby can mean problem simply makes room for another animal to
death for that animal. continue the behavior. The effective solution is to
This organized team approach will reduce the If there is any suspicion of rabies, animals remove the attractant, or the method of entry. Pet
numbers of orphaned babies of all species, while that have been handled by humans are food, pet doors, new grass, ponds, open windows,
ensuring that animals who need care get it in a uncapped chimneys, all invite wildlife to come on in
euthanized and tested. It’s an absolute
timely fashion. and share the wealth!
heartbreak for everyone concerned when
All training and supplies will be provided by healthy animals are euthanized because California Fish and Game Code (CCR 679) states
Yggdrasil and Rancho Raccoon. The first training of human ignorance. that trapped wildlife may not be relocated. Trapped
will occur in January; look for more information on wildlife must be killed or released in the immediate
the Rancho Raccoon and YUWR websites and blog, area - defined in CDFG policy as the property on
If you see a raccoon that looks sick, (runny eyes and
or email to sign up. which the animal was trapped.
nose, dragging legs, weak, seeming “tame,”) call our
hotline at 510/421-9897, your local Animal Care &
The Facts About Control Department or Vector Control for advice.
Moving wildlife from one location to another is not
as humane as you might believe. Much of our local
Raccoon Rabies Note: canine distemper, a virus common to
raccoons, that is NOT transmissible to humans, can
wildlife lives in family groups for a large part of the
year, and has dependent juveniles into the fall and
The California Department of Public Health tracks have similar symptoms to rabies.
winter. Rancho Raccoon is currently fostering
rabies cases by county in our state. Raccoons orphans too young to be without their mothers.
Enjoy wild animals from a distance. Do not handle,
accounted for FIVE of the approximately 2800 cases
feed, or attract them. Place trash in secure garbage cans.
of rabies reported in California in the past 10 years. It can be fatal to remove a wild animal from its
The sole raccoon case in the Bay Area occurred in territory into another. Wildlife is very jealous of the
Never adopt or bring wild animals into your home.
Novato last year as a result of a rabid bat biting the resources in their territories, and do not welcome
Teach your children not to handle unfamiliar
raccoon. Bats, skunks, fox, and domestic animals new members. In their home territories, most
animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear
each account for more cases of rabies than raccoons. animals have enough knowledge of the area and of
the other animals in it to avoid difficult situations if
Thankfully, there is very little raccoon rabies in the Keep rabies vaccinations up-to-date for all cats and they want to. Not so in an entirely new territory.
Western United States. The Surveillance Data from dogs.
the Centers for Disease Control indicate the East Please, do not trap and relocate wildlife! Call our
Coast of the United States is the area of main Prevent bats from entering areas where they might hotline at 510/421-9897 for advice on dealing with
concern for raccoon rabies. That being said, any come in contact with people or pets. Check out the wildlife conflicts, or email me directly.
CDC and Bat Conservation International websites
mammal can get rabies, and prevention is key to
for further information about bats and rabies.
protecting ourselves.

Rancho Raccoon is a project of Yggdrasil Urban Wildlife Rescue 2

First Release: a job well-done.

Eileen Philips and Julia Earl Megan Isadore sets up orphan rescue
at Children’s Fairyland, Oakland.

“At last, raccoons I can pet!” Dad Ladd Shelley Ladd: end of season cleanup.

Eileen Philips works on her new rehabilitation pen.

Volunteers, the Heart and Soul of Wildlife Rehabilitation

The people who volunteer to care for orphaned and to volunteer at a wildlife rehab. Before I could catch Eileen Philips: 1st year volunteer:
injured raccoons are among the world’s most giving, my breath, I found myself feeding 3 of the cutest, “Becoming a raccoon volunteer is a lot of work and
most patient and kindest. They work long hours, most playful and lovable little critters I’d ever a lot of fun too. I fostered two batches of 3 raccoons
sometimes around the clock, to keep these small animals encountered. This wasn’t just putting a bowl of food each and they were all adorable animals. They need
healthy and growing. They nurture, then back off and in a cage -- Oh no! This was making a formula in 3 to have their pens cleaned each day, which takes
allow the raccoons to develop as wild, confident juveniles tiny baby bottles several times a day and night. about half an hour, sometimes a little more.
who have no need or desire for human interaction. To us, Then came the hard part, but also the most fun; I got
They love to play and even though they sleep a lot,
success means watching a group of juvenile raccoons bottle-feed the cute little critters who screamed,
they have a definite play time. They are very
disappear into the woods without a backward glance or a wriggled, climbed and grabbed at their bottles.
arborial and like to sleep and relax on shelves near
thank you, and knowing they have had our best. Once we fed the little guys, they would crawl
the top of their pen. They come down to eat and
around for awhile and then curl up together and
Here are some reactions to working with raccoons from they play all over the pen. Their favorite spot is their
drift off to sleep.
Rancho Raccoon volunteers, in their own words: swimming pool. They play in this constantly,
These three Raccoons were very young, only a few dunking each other and playing “lifesaving” where
Shelley Ladd, 2d year volunteer: weeks old. We measured their weight in grams. one lies on his back in the water and holds the other
They couldn’t even walk very well yet but they around his fat tummy from behind. They also spent
"I live in a constant state of amazement at the
could climb! This all changed fast as these guys a lot of time jumping in their hammock, and on
wondrous beauty and all the creatures, big and
grew quickly. We had to try and teach them their swing.
small, that exist in our world.
everything their real Mom would so they could
survive in the wild. I got a lot of hilarious videos! It was very gratifying
I feel so lucky and blessed to have the opportunity
to have little raccoons, but a little hard to see them
to give back to something that has given me so
I hope they are all okay and doing well. Getting to go when released. They were very happy to be ‘real’
much joy. Working with Rancho Raccoon as a
know these wild animals and being able to help raccoons though, so I know I did the right thing!”
wildlife rehabber has touched my heart so deeply
baby animals that otherwise would have died has
and changed my life forever.”
been greatly rewarding. I feel that humans owe Did you Know?
wildlife everything we can possibly give them. We Raccoons love persimmons. Every fall
“Dad” Ladd, 2d year volunteer: are the ones encroaching on them. Thank you we gather unwanted persimmons and freeze them
“I’d like to tell you about one of the most rewarding Rancho Raccoon, for all I’ve learned, the great for food during the next baby season.
experiences of my life. My daughter and I decided experiences and range of emotions.” Got extra? Call us!

Rancho Raccoon is a project of Yggdrasil Urban Wildlife Rescue 3

In Appreciation
Without your contributions of goods, services, talent and ideas, we would be unable
to provide such wonderful help to our furry clients. While raccoons are not an
endangered or rare species, each raccoon values its life as much as you or I do.
Thank you all for your kind gifts.

Non Profit Sponsor Individual Support Corporate Support

Yggdrasil Urban Wildlife Rescue, Oakland, CA Robert and Anne Carroll Colombo Bait
Terence Carroll Golden State Lumber
Foster Care and Transport Volunteers Anne Chen Humane Society of the United States
Julia Earl Annie and Paul Dolan Niles PetAg
Ladd Gilbertson Gina Farr Petco
Shelley Ladd Ceci Herrman Salmon Protection and Watershed Network
Eileen Philips Janet and Tony Isadore Barreca Scales Online
David Stacy Cindy and Richard Jordan Schering Plough Animal Health Division
Juanita Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue
Kim Keener WorldWise, Inc.
Veterinary Care
Mary Keydash
Andrew Sams Clinic
Pamelah McNeily
Montclair Veterinary Hospital
Ryan Monroe Special thanks to Terence Carroll, Lila
Carol Petersen Travis and Montclair Veterinary Hospital
Graphic and Web Design
Laraine Stein for going above and beyond for wildlife!
Lucie Duclos Design
Diane Valenti
Parisse Multimedia

Please consider us for an end- of-year Donation!

Donating to Rancho Raccoon ensures that we can continue to feed, vaccinate, provide warm Contact Us
and safe rehabilitation pens, get veterinary help when necessary, provide educational
programs, answer our hotline and rescue raccoons and other wildlife, as well as all the other Megan Isadore, Director
tasks we do daily to help keep wildlife wild, healthy and free. We are an all-volunteer
organization. Telephone: 415/488-1957
We always need cash to augment our Email
donations of goods and services. Please
consider an end-of-year, tax-deductible Rancho Raccoon
donation. You may send a check to the PO Box 103
address at right, or donate through Forest Knolls
PayPal from our website. Thank you CA 94933
for thinking of us! It’s your help that
allows these beautiful animals to get the
second chance they need.

Donations of goods are also welcome!

Check out our website for a list of items
we need. Gift certificates to grocery
stores, pet stores, hardware stores and lumber yards are extremely helpful!

Rancho Raccoon is part of Yggdrasil Urban Wildlife Rescue, a California non-profit. Your
Photos by Terence Carroll, Megan Isadore,
donations are tax-deductible as allowed by law.
Maria Rodriguez, and Shelley Ladd

Rancho Raccoon is a project of Yggdrasil Urban Wildlife Rescue 4