Raccoons are mammals that can be found in a variety of settings. Raccoons live in urban and suburban areas across the United States. Raccoons tend to live near human population centers in many instances. They do this in order to access food and even places to live. An issue associated with raccoons residing near people is the fact that raccoon droppings can present a health risk to humans. As a result, there are specific procedures that need to be followed when it comes to cleaning up raccoon droppings.
Raccoons Use Latrines
Unlike many mammals, including rodents, raccoons develop latrines at which they consistently defecate. In other words, raccoon droppings accumulate in specific locations. Thus, cleaning up racoon droppings involves focusing on a specific latrine or latrines the animal or animals use over a period of time. Multiple raccoons will share latrines.
Disease and Raccoon Droppings
Raccoon droppings carry what is known as Baylisascaris procyonis. Baylisascaris procyonis is a type of ringworm that can pass from raccoon droppings to humans. Specifically, Baylisascaris procyonis eggs are found in raccoon droppings. Unprotected contact with droppings can result in these eggs being ingested by a person. When that occurs, an individual can be afflicted with ringworms, which can cause serious complications.
Eliminating Raccoon Latrines and Personal Protective Equipment
Because of the health risk that can be presented by raccoon droppings, it is important that you utilize appropriate personal protective equipment when eliminating raccoon latrines. The personal protective equipment, also known as PPE, that you need to use when cleaning raccoon droppings includes:
- HEPA mask or respirator
- Smock or uniform
- Protective eyewear
- Protective shoe covering
Where to Commonly Find Raccoon Latrines
The most common locations at which you are likely to find raccoon latrines include:
- Base of trees
- Wood piles
Different cleaning strategies are utilized when a latrine is outside or inside.
Outdoor Latrine Cleanup
The first phase of raccoon dropping cleanup is to dampen the feces to prevent them from crumbling and creating dust. This can be accomplished by thoroughly dampening a latrine with misting water.
Once dampened, a shovel can be utilized to remove droppings from a latrine and placed into a sturdy plastic bag. Consider double bagging raccoon droppings. The droppings can be placed in your garbage for transport to a landfill, buried, or burned.
Baylisascaris procyonis eggs cannot be “killed” with chemicals. Rather, only heat will destroy these eggs. Thus, burning droppings will kill baylisascaris procyonis eggs. In addition, boiling water can also kill eggs.
Depending on the location of an outdoor latrine, dousing the area with boiling water should be considered. This step works to ensure that any remaining raccoon feces or droppings dust is treated, killing eggs in the process.
Indoor Latrine Cleanup
The process of cleaning up raccoon droppings in doors also begins with dampening the feces with water to prevent them from breaking apart and causing dust to contaminate the air. This can be done using a spray bottle or other type of device that allows for a misting of the latrine.
Using a shovel or other similar piece of equipment, remove droppings from the latrine and place in a sturdy plastic bag. Again, consider double bagging the feces. The droppings can then be placed in the garbage for transport to a landfill, buried, or burned.
If the location of an interior latrine appropriately can be subjected to boiling water, that is a wise course to kill baylisascaris procyonis eggs. In the alternative, the area can be cleaned with warm water and some type of soap or detergent. A sponge can be used for the process and should be rinsed regularly. The sponge should be disposed in the same manner as the droppings.
The waste water should then be flushed down the toilet. A bucket used for this process should be cleaned with boiling water.
Final Cleaning Process
When the primary element of outdoor or indoor latrine cleaning is completed, any disposable personal protective gear utilized should be disposed of in the same manner as the droppings. Personal protective equipment that is not disposable should be washed with detergent in hot water. You need to make sure that you thoroughly wash your hands when you complete the overall raccoon droppings cleaning process.
Professional Racoon Droppings Cleaning
If you’ve a more extensive issue with raccoon droppings on or around your property you may want to consider retaining the services of a professional raccoon droppings cleanup company. A biohazard remediation professional can ensure that raccoon droppings are thoroughly cleaned from your home, business, or other location. You can rest assured that this process will be undertaken in a safe way to protect the health and welfare of individuals, both during the cleaning process and once it is completed.