Neighbors Get No Help in Dealing With Raccoons

HIGHLAND PARK, CHATTANOOGA (WDEF-TV) – If you live in the city you expect certain services like water, sewer, garbage collection, fire and police.
But when it comes to wild animals, you’re pretty much on your own.
That comes as a surprise to Highland Park residents who say its raccoons that are taking over their neighborhood.

In rural areas, and also in the city, you’ll find raccoons anywhere there’s a food source.
That can be a problem.

But you have to admit, they’re cute and they’re fascinating to watch.
But they are, after all, wild animals who can be dangerous.

LORETTA HEDBERG "…the mama and babies that I know of ..There’s got to be a male..but they come out of this…."

No one has been attacked, but it could happen.

LORETTA HEDBERG, HIGHLAND PARK "Raccoons will attack people and they carry rabies and there’s more than one in the sewer system."

Loretta Hedberg says some are pretty bold. .

LORETTA HEDBERG "That I know there’s a mama, three babies…and they’ve tried to come in my house on more than one occasion."

Loretta and neighbor, Vanessa Moss have named that raccoon.

VANESSA MOSS, HIGHLAND PARK "We called it Rocky, now its Roxy and her babies."

So why are they here in this neighborhood?

TISH GAILMARD, WILDLIFE CURATOR, THE NATURE CENTER (IN:27:18) "If you have cats or dogs and you feed outside, you are going to see raccoons in your area. They will come and eat any kind of food..that’s left out, or any kind of water source that’s left out."

So, what to do?

Loretta called the city, and they told her to call McKamey.
McKamey told her they don’t deal with wild animals, call the state Wildlife people.

LORETTA HEDBERG "Wildlife preserve referred me to like 3 different people that are like animal catchers..and you have to pay them a fee of anywhere from 350 to 400 dollars."

Vanessa thinks it should be the city’s job to help the neighborhood.

VANESSA MOSS, HIGHLAND PARK "Well, its not my storm drain. If I had an infestation I would take care of it."

But it’s probably going to be up to the residents to solve the problem.

Loretta Hedberg admits she and some of her neighbors are feeding the feral cats in the neighborhood…which might be at the root of the problem.
She says they may have a community meeting to talk about that.

Categories: Consumer News, Government & Politics, Local News

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