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Common raccoon, North America, up to 70 cm (28 inches) long The scientific name for the raccoon family is the procyonids. They include the raccoons, coatis, kinkajous and cacomistles. All are quite small animals with long tails. They are good climbers, and some feed and nest in trees. Most members of the raccoon family live alone and are nocturnal, apart from coatis, which form groups of females and feed during the day. Raccoons and coatis are omnivores: they feed on a wide range of foods including rodents, insects, frogs, eggs, plants, fruits and nuts. Raccoons have adapted to urban environments, where they frequently scavenge from rubbish bins at night.


Common raccoon, North America, up to 70 cm (28 inches) longCoatis move about the rainforests of Central and South America in noisy bands of up to 20 animals, foraging on the ground or in the trees for insects, tarantulas and fruit. They will also feed on lizards, rodents, birds and eggs. With their sharp teeth and claws, they can defend themselves fiercely from any attack. 

Raccoons have particularly dextrous paws that enable them to open closed containers such as rubbish bins and doors.

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