Feeding deer can be quite the tricky task! One of the most formidable foes you may encounter are those pesky raccoons. They sure know how to be persistent and sneaky when it comes to snatching up some grub. Unfortunately, these masked bandits can cause quite the commotion for both your deer friends and other wildlife nearby. But fear not! We have some delightful tips to share with you on how to keep raccoons away from deer feeders.
Before we delve into prevention methods, it is important to understand raccoons and their behavior. These little bandits are known for their distinctive black masks and ringed tails, but there’s more to these critters than meets the eye. Before we can talk about preventing raccoon problems, we first need to understand their behaviors.
Raccoons, known as nocturnal animals, primarily thrive during the evening and early morning hours. They seek refuge in comfortable dens for most of the day. Raccoons possess remarkable olfactory senses and expert dexterity, making them skillful scavengers. They exhibit a high level of adaptability, enabling them to survive in diverse ecosystems, ranging from forests to urbanized regions.
Moreover, raccoons are quite sociable creatures that enjoy traveling in packs, which can pose a challenge when it comes to safeguarding your bird feeder from their curious paws.
How to Prevent Raccoons From Coming Near Deer Feeders
There are several effective ways to prevent raccoons from accessing deer feeders, including:
Installing a Raccoon-Proof Feeder
To deter raccoons from accessing your bird feeder, consider installing a specialized feeder designed to keep them out. These feeders feature a locking mechanism that can only be triggered by the weight of a deer, making it virtually impossible for raccoons to access the food inside.
Applying Lubricant To The Feeders Legs
If you want to keep raccoons away from deer feeders, you can put something slippery on the metal legs. You can use a kind of sticky stuff called axle grease or vaseline, but don’t use oil because it can hurt the environment. Just be careful to not get the slippery stuff on the spinning part or it might get stuck. You can also use a special kind of pipe and slippery stuff to keep the raccoons away.
Securing the Feeder with a Baffle or Barrier
If you don’t want raccoons to eat the food in your feeder, you can put something around it to stop them. A baffle is a cone-shaped thing made of metal that goes on the pole holding the feeder. A barrier could be a fence or wall that’s too high for raccoons to climb over.
Using Electric Fencing
Electric fences can help protect deer feeders from raccoons and other animals. The electric shock scares them away, and the fence can be made to keep other wildlife out too.
Keeping the Area Around the Feeder Clean
If you clean up any dropped food near the place where you feed animals, raccoons will be less likely to come around. Raccoons like to eat, but if there’s no food nearby, they won’t come as often.
How to Keep Raccoons Away From Deer Feeders with Natural Repellents
How to keep raccoons away from deer feeders naturally? There are several natural ways to repel raccoons from deer feeders:
Repelling Raccoons with Scent
Raccoons hate scents that smell spicy, pungent, caustic, or sour. Some of the best natural scents that are effective repellents for raccoons are cayenne pepper, vinegar, peppermint oil, ammonia, and coyote urine.
Planting Natural Deterrents around the Feeder
Certain plants, such as marigolds, daffodils, and alliums, have been known to repel raccoons. Planting these around the feeder can help deter raccoons from visiting the area.
Using Noise or Motion-Activated Devices
Noise or motion-activated devices can be used to scare away raccoons. Devices such as ultrasonic repellents emit a high-pitched sound that is inaudible to humans but can be heard by raccoons. Motion-activated sprinklers can also be effective in deterring raccoons.
Raccoon Repellents for Keeping Your Deer Feeder Safe
There are also commercial and homemade repellents that can be used to keep raccoons away from deer feeders:
Using Commercial Repellents
Commercial repellents can be purchased from most garden stores or online retailers. These repellents contain natural ingredients that are safe for wildlife but are unpleasant for raccoons. Some examples include Repels-All Animal Repellent and Liquid Fence.
Applying Homemade Repellents
Homemade repellents are easy to make and can be just as effective as commercial products. Some popular homemade repellents include:
- Vinegar: You can mix vinegar and water and spray the mix around the feeder to create a strong odor that will repel raccoons.
- Cayenne Pepper: A mixture of cayenne pepper and water can also be sprayed on or around the feeder to deter raccoons. The strong scent and taste are unpleasant for raccoons and will keep them away from the feeder.
When using repellents, it is important to read and follow the instructions carefully to ensure safe use. Applying too much or incorrectly can harm nearby animals and wildlife.
Physical Deterrents For Keeping Raccoons Away
Physical deterrents can be effective in keeping raccoons away from deer feeders. Some common physical deterrents include:
Installing a Motion-Activated Sprinkler
A motion-activated sprinkler is an effective way to keep raccoons away from deer feeders. When a raccoon enters the area, the sprinkler will activate and spray water, scaring away the raccoon.
Building a Platform for the Feeder that is Too High for Raccoons to Reach
Another great solution you can try is build a platform for the feeder that is far too high for the raccoons to reach. They will try but won’t succeed in getting the feed.
You should make the platform at least 8 feet high. Then, carefully secure the feeder to the platform so that it doesn’t fall.
Trapping and Relocation
A permanent solution for keeping raccoons away from deer feeders is to trap them and relocate them. You should, of course, trap them in a humane manner.
Also, only relocate them to areas that are safe as well as legal.
While, by doing so, you will get rid of the raccoons you trapped forever, you may find other raccoons move into the area. So, keep that in mind.
Knowing how to keep raccoons away from deer feeders is essential for the safety of deer and other wildlife in the area. The above mentioned methods are effective to keep raccoons away from the deer feeders. However, while employing these practices, be sure to do them in a humane manner. Also, always follow the local rules and regulations.
Keep raccoons away from deer feeders and ensure that your deer feeding program is successful.