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Mother Raccoon Teaches Baby To Climb Tree
Watch this mama raccoon teach her baby how to climb a tree
Rachel Shapiro
08.04.17

On a sunny summer day, a mama raccoon and her baby headed to a tree, where the mother taught her little one how to climb.

These tree climbing lessons resulted in an absolutely adorable video!

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Photographer Jeffrey Reid shot the video in his father’s backyard in Port Townshend, Washington. As he was watching the mother and baby, it became clear that the mother was teaching her little one how to climb. Joseph Travis, a biologist at Florida State University, agreed with Reid. Travis told National Geographic:

“She’s saying, ‘Watch me, now you do it. The mother is going to keep putting it on the trunk until the kit figures it out.”

The video shows the mother using different techniques to teach her little one how to climb.

At one point, the raccoon holds the kit in her mouth and scales the tree while she’s holding him. She also places the kit on a nearby roof and demonstrates how to climb.

Travis explains that it’s normal for raccoons to try different positions and tactics when they’re teaching their babies how to climb. “It takes some trial and error by the offspring to get it right,” he says.

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Wildlife specialist Lando McCall thinks that the kit is about four weeks old, which is a little young to be climbing on his own. He said that most kits don’t start climbing on their own until they’re about two months old.

But the kit in the video was clearly a fast learner. At the end of his climbing lesson, he was able to hold onto the tree on his own.

The kit slowly started climbing up the tree while his proud mother supervised.

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Now that the little kit knows how to climb, he’ll be able to use this skill to escape predators.

Raccoon expert and zoologist Sam Zeveloff told National Geographic that raccoons climb trees to escape wolves and other predators who can’t climb. Zeveloff also says that trees are safe places for raccoons to sleep. Raccoons will often build their nests in tree cavities, and they’ll raise their young there.

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The mama raccoon in this video is an amazing tree climbing teacher, and her little kit greatly benefited from her skills. Check out the adorable climbing lesson in the video below!

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By Rachel Shapiro
hi@sbly.com
Rachel Shapiro is a contributing writing at Shareably. She is based in New York and can be reached at hi@shareably.net.
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