From May 24…
The Saturday of Memorial Day weekend started off tamely enough. We woke up and after breakfast headed out into the yard to get some work done in the garden and flowers. We got the girls in their swimmies so they could splash around in the sprinkler and water table.
We grilled out for lunch and when we came into the sunroom to eat we heard the most awful noise coming from within the chimney. It for sure was (at least) one raccoon. It sounded like it was right on top of the chimney flue. Whatever it was, it was NOT happy and was just screaming and crying and sounded like it wanted to break right through. We were not amused.
(It’s definitely so weird seeing Pippin in these pictures. Our little guy was a part of everything and he is so missed. Especially as we have to sweep the kitchen floor every single day now.)
We called one of the “Animal Removal” companies to come out and take over the situation. At first they told us they were in the middle of their daughter’s birthday party (not sure how that classifies as being on call…) and that they wouldn’t be able to come until Sunday morning. We weren’t thrilled, so we tried several other places and couldn’t even get return calls. While we were eating dinner they called and said they were on their way and we were THRILLED because these things had been screaming pretty much nonstop all day. The girls and I finished eating and were spying on the action from the sunroom. The guys quickly figured out there were two babies in there – but that they weren’t on top of the flue – they were in walls beside the chimney. Ugh. This was definitely going to be another chapter in the book we plan to write one day called “Doing Things the Hard Way”.
One raccoon came out pretty easily – the loud, obnoxious one. They were able to get it from below in the crawlspace thanks to a hole Momma Raccoon had made. While Momma had been pretty vicious, the babies were approximately 4-6 weeks old, really couldn’t run yet, and just had “nubs” for teeth so they couldn’t bite. The guys were just walking around with them on their shoulder. It was definitely wild to see and we got a big lesson in Raccoon life that night.
The other raccoon – not so easy. It was down in the crevice in the wall beside the chimney. Off came the marble, off came some molding, part of the wall, and so on. It was not fun watching it all be sawed into. We took this opportunity to ask the guys about all the different animals they catch – everything from snakes to armadillos to skunks and bats and everything in between. We learned that raccoons are some of the most vicious – the guys showed us all the scars on their arms from raccoon attacks, and said he’d put them up against a pit bull any day.
And finally after some massive destruction to our home, the little guy was out. This one was the quiet one, so we all got to pet it and have some other photo opps. He put it down to take its picture and it was wild to see that it couldn’t even get away. Lilli pretty much loved the whole experience and hearing about all the adventures those guys go on. She changed her future career choice to be an animal catcher like them after that night, so that she could help the stuck “raccoons, snakes and butterflies”. Butterflies are the only thing in that list I can go along with! (Of course she’s moved on and now wants to be an American Ninja Warrior!)
Yup. Two little baby raccoons. Six thousand dollars of damage for clean up – according to their quote. We are still debating some of their quote, and although insurance will pay much of that (past our deductible) we feel like they’re definitely trying to jack it up a bit over the top, especially on some of their measurements of our house. So yes, definitely not the relaxing Memorial Day we were after!!