Your deck is a place for you and your family to relax with some drinks and light up the BBQ. But sometimes wild animals choose to occupy or use the space. It can be frustrating to know a raccoon has defecated on your deck. If the deck is raw wood, it is likely to stain, but if safely removed the area can be safe again to use. The danger of raccoon feces is severe, and it should be removed by a professional. The feces contain a dangerous parasite called raccoon roundworm that can become air born when the feces start to dry. The raccoon is immune to this parasite but other animals like your pet and humans can be easily affected. The spore can enter the lungs through inhalation and pass through the permeable barrier of the lungs into the bloodstream. When it reaches the brain, it starts to grow and consume brain matter. This is incurable now and likely for a long time to come. The symptoms, before brain death, are forgetting things like Alzheimer’s. This is not something anyone wants to experience so call a professional to get it removed.
Why do raccoons come to human homes? They come for two main reasons, to live and/or to defecate. During raccoon baby season which in southern Ontario can last from February to the end of June. This can mean a female raccoon with babies may come to your property, living on another possibly in an attic, a shed, or under a deck, and uses your property to defecate. They are often clean animals though they do defecate in their nesting place. The female will come to your property or another to hide from other males. The evolutionary process of raccoons is that the males will mate with a female and then leave or be chased out by the female to be more specific. The male will then travel around looking for other females so they can kill and eat their babies. This helps the male’s babies and gives them a better chance at survival with more food to access and easier places to hide. For this reason, baby raccoons do have a high mortality rate, but female mothers are vicious in their protection.
If there are feces from a raccoon on your deck, then there is a chance a raccoon is living under it. There have been situations where a raccoon used the deck as an access point in the crawl space and lived there for years. There have been situations where animals will burrow underneath a patio that is flat to the ground. The raccoon is a capable burrower and has semi-apposable thumbs that allow it to grasp things like a soffit and rip it off completely. The females with babies are the most likely to do this. To enter your deck or your attic. So, if you have raccoon feces on your property it would be a good idea to get a wildlife inspection of your property as well.