General Physical Parameters And Health Characteristics Of Translocated Raccoons

Basic physical parameters and health characteristics are presented on raccoons (Procyon lotor) representative of animals offered for sale to raccoon hunting clubs in the southeastern United States. Comparisons were made with similar data on samples of wild raccoons live-trapped by noncommercial wildlife agencies. Raccoons from animal dealers had more fresh bite wounds and fracture calluses, significantly greater numbers of infected soft tissue lesions (P <.05), and generally were in poorer physical condition than animals live-trapped by game biologists. Bite wounds, and infected soft tissue injuries which may have originated as bite wounds, were considered as an enhancement factor for possible rabies transmission. The generally poor physical condition of the raccoons offered to hunters for purchase was viewed as a possible factor contributing to the low survival previous authorities have reported in translocated raccoons.

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