From Small To Large: Animals That Raccoons Eat And Why They Eat Them

Raccoons are known for their adorable antics that can be seen online and their scavenging habits. A family of raccoons can easily destroy an attic or room searching for food. From small to large: Animals That Raccoons Eat and Why They Eat Them. 

They are scavengers and will eat whatever is available to them, including other animals and plants. Their diet can be healthier in captivity because they don’t have to search for food. However, their diet is more diverse in the wild since they have to scavenge for food.

Continue reading to find out more about what animals raccoons eat.

Do raccoons eat animals?

Do raccoons eat animals?

Raccoons are a part of the Procyonidae family and are native to North America. Raccoons are omnivorous animals that consume a variety of items in their diet.

While they consume more invertebrates than vertebrates, the small reptiles, amphibians, birds, and other vertebrates make up the smallest portion of their diet.

They scavenge food from dumpsites and often steal pet food from homes. Interestingly, raccoons have even been known to surf!

What do wild raccoons eat?

What do wild raccoons eat?

Raccoons are omnivores, which means that they will eat just about anything. Their diet consists of various fruits, vegetables, and animal proteins. While they will consume most food items, some things are toxic to raccoons and can kill them. 

From small to large: Animals That Raccoons Eat and Why They Eat Them

Young Raccoon standing in front and facing at the camera isolated on white

CrayFish

Raccoons are opportunistic feeders, meaning they will eat whatever is easiest and most readily available. It often includes crayfish, which are plentiful and easy to catch. Crayfish also make for a good nutrient source of protein, making them a desirable food choice for raccoons.

Clams

Raccoons catch clams by overturning rocks and logs where the clams reside. Clams do not move around like other animals, so it is easier for a raccoon to find and catch them. Clams provide raccoons with many vitamins and minerals, which help them stay healthy and strong.

Fish

Raccoons are good swimmers and can be found in various aquatic habitats. However, they typically don’t swim out in the middle of a lake and dive for fish.

Instead, they grab easy and slow fish near the water’s edge. Raccoons love to eat fish because they are usually a good source of omega 3 and 6 fatty acids.

Frogs

Frogs are amphibians that can be found near water sources. They provide many nutrients for raccoons, including vitamin B12, iron, zinc, and potassium. Raccoons can catch frogs and toads that live near water or tree frogs if they climb a tree.

Snails

Raccoons are omnivorous animals that eat various things, depending on what is available. One of their favorite food sources is snails, which they can find in many different environments.

Snails are easy prey for raccoons because they have a high sense of touch in water and can be easily located and captured.

Turtles

Turtles provide a good source of protein, vitamins, and minerals for raccoons and can be found near many freshwater sources like lakes and rivers.

They might not be as calorically- or nutritionally dense as some other animals, but turtles are still a better meal than scraps from the trash.

Reptiles (Snake)

Raccoons’ diet includes snakes, which will consume both young and adult snakes. Lizards are also common prey for raccoons, with the animals being found in or near water where lizards like to live.

Raccoons will also scavenge and eat dead or injured lizards. Young snakes move slower than adults, making them an easier target for raccoons.

Rodents

Raccoons mostly eat small rodents in the wild, such as mice, rats, and squirrels. These animals provide a great source of protein, vitamins, and minerals.

Raccoons are lazy animals and will only hunt for food if it is easy to catch. Rats have more fat and calories than mice, providing a better energy source for raccoons.

Muskrats

Raccoons are omnivorous animals and will eat a variety of items. One such item is the muskrat. Muskrats are common in North America and can be found near slow-moving water. They share a habitat with crayfish, clams, and raccoons.

Raccoons typically eat more nutritious food items, but they will consume muskrats if the opportunity arises.

Rabbits

Raccoons are known to hunt and eat small animals like rabbits. You don’t typically see them doing this because rabbits are good at hiding and can run fast. If you have pet rabbits, it is important to take measures to protect them from hungry raccoons.

You can do this by providing them with a secure cabinet or raccoon-proof fence. Additionally, you can make modifications to your yard and home to keep raccoons away from it.

Squirrels

Raccoons are opportunistic omnivores, and as such, they will eat a variety of things. Squirrels can be on the menu for raccoons, but it is not a regular occurrence.

Adult raccoons cannot typically keep up with the speed of a squirrel, so they will only go after one if it is injured or found dead. Raccoons are more agile than squirrels, so they have a better chance of catching one.

Mice

Raccoons prey on mice, one of the raccoons’ most common prey items. They are big and fast, making them a challenging catch for raccoons. Some raccoons will even catch mice when they are bored and eat them later, similar to cats. 

Rats

Rats are one of the most common animals that raccoons eat. They are easy to catch and can become a staple in the raccoon’s diet. If you have a rat problem, it will likely attract a raccoon problem. Rats provide an important source of food for the city-dwelling raccoon.

Gophers

Gophers are preyed upon by various animals, including but not limited to raccoons, coyotes, and bobcats.

Raccoons are the main predator of gophers, and they usually only go after them if they are injured or if the opportunity presents itself (like when a mother is away from her young). Gophers can sometimes be found in the nests of raccoons, where the young are typically eaten.

Birds

Raccoons are opportunistic predators, and they will go after any animal that is easy to catch and provides them with a good meal. It includes birds, which can easily fly away, injured or dead birds, and bird nests with eggs.

Ground birds provide a lot of nutrients and protein for raccoons, making them a common target.

Worms and Insects

In addition to scavenging for food in garbage cans and other refuse, raccoons also eat worms and insects.

While these provide a small amount of protein, they are readily available in urban environments with more human activity. which means that raccoons living in cities and suburbs can find a greater variety of food sources than their rural counterparts.

Eggs

Raccoons are omnivorous animals, which means they eat both plant and animal matter. Bird eggs are a particular favorite for raccoons, as they are high in protein and other nutrients. Raccoons will also eat snake eggs and lizard eggs when they find them.

Are raccoons omnivores?

Are raccoons omnivores?

Raccoons are omnivores, which means they eat both plant and animal matter. While they primarily eat insects, small animals, and fruits, they will also consume grains, nuts, and other vegetation types. This diet allows them to live in a variety of habitats.

Do raccoons eat rabbits?

Raccoons are opportunistic feeders and will attack and eat rabbits when they have the chance. Raccoons are omnivorous animals and consume a variety of different food items. It includes small mammals, such as rabbits and insects, fruits, and vegetables.

Do raccoons eat squirrels?

Do raccoons eat squirrels? Raccoons are opportunistic omnivores, meaning they will consume various food items depending on what is available to them.

Squirrels are one of the animals that raccoons will prey upon, and they are known to be very successful in catching and killing them. Raccoons get close to their prey before attacking and rarely escape once caught.

Do raccoons eat meat?

Do raccoons eat meat?

Raccoons are carnivores, which means that they eat mostly meat. However, they will also eat berries, fruits, vegetables, and acorns if those items are available. Raccoons will also eat grains and grasses if nothing else is available.

This diet of meats allows the raccoon to be opportunistic feeders and helps them survive in various environments.

Do raccoons eat rats?

Raccoons are omnivorous animals and generally eat a variety of items in their diet. While they will eat live rats and mice if they are hungry, it is not their preferred food choice.

Raccoons can transmit diseases to other raccoons through feces or saliva contact with rat or mouse blood. Rat and mouse can be combative when captured, biting and scratching the raccoon.

What to feed a pet Raccoon at home? (Pets food – Cats or Dogs Food)

Raccoons will consume a lot of food since growing, but their diet will shift more towards meat as they mature. Complete dog food is a great diet staple for raccoons, as it provides them with the nutrients they need.

Do raccoons eat mice?

Raccoons are omnivores and, as such, will eat a variety of things. They will likely take that option if they can find an easier meal, like a bird or a small animal.

However, if the only food available is something like a mouse, they will eat it. This statement is a fact – raccoons have been observed eating mice in the wild.

What do raccoons eat in the city?

Raccoons are opportunistic omnivores, meaning they will eat anything available to them. In the city, they primarily eat roadkill and pet food. They will also raid garbage cans for food. This scavenging behavior helps them survive in an urban environment.

Do raccoons eat turtles?

Raccoons are predators, and as such, they will eat a variety of animals. While turtles may not be their first choice, they will certainly eat them if the opportunity arises. Raccoons are known to carry turtles to a safe area before eating them so that they don’t damage their food source.

Can raccoons eat chocolate?

Yes, raccoons can eat chocolate. However, it is not recommended because they are toxic to chocolate.

The side effects of eating chocolate include vomiting, diarrhea, and excessive urination. Raccoons love anything with sugar, so they will be attracted to chocolate if given the opportunity.

Are raccoons scavengers?

Are raccoons scavengers?

Raccoons are scavengers and will feed on anything available to them. It includes carrion or the remains of dead animals. They are also predators and will prey on other animals. In addition to scavenging and preying, they will also eat plants if necessary.

Do raccoons eat dead animals?

Raccoons will eat pet food, dead animals, and human garbage. 

Pet food is simply an animal’s diet for their species. A dead animal is a carcass of an animal that has died.

Conclusion

Raccoons are one of the most versatile and adaptable animals in North America. They are omnivorous, which means they will eat anything they can get their paws on. It includes small animals, insects, fruits, vegetables, and trash.

In conclusion, it is best not to feed raccoons as they may become dependent on humans for food, leading to negative consequences. Additionally, if you see raccoons in your garbage cans, take measures to secure the cans so they cannot get into them and eat the garbage.

FAQs

Do raccoons eat apples, grapes, nuts, and acorns?

Yes, raccoons eat apples, grapes, nuts, and acorns.

Are raccoons carnivores?

No, raccoons are omnivores.

Does raccoon eat snakes and frogs?

Yes, raccoons eat snakes and frogs.

Do raccoons eat birds?

Yes, raccoons eat birds.