Q: Grandma, I enjoy camping out in the woods. However, the raccoons usually spoil the fun when they eat the food inside my tent. Can you please recommend some remedies to keep them away?
A: Dear J, Raccoons can really ruin an otherwise ideal camping outdoors. They can be a nuisance that can create havoc even at home and gardens. Getting rid of them can be difficult unless you know a handful of home remedies to shoo the pests away from your campsite.
Here are some ways to keep these raccoons from pestering and ruining your camping day.
HOME REMEDIES FOR CAMPING PESTS
1. Cayenne pepper – Sprinkle the whole perimeter of the campsite with cayenne pepper to deter the raccoons from going near your tent.
2. Pepper spray – Combine ground cayenne pepper, jalapeno and water. Mix thoroughly before spraying all over the area. For more effective results, spray daily to keep the repelling scent always fresh.
3. Cinnamon – Sprinkle generous amount of cinnamon powder around the campsite to irritate the raccoons and discourage them from investigating closer.
4. Spice spray – Boil two quarts of water with the combined pieces of hot peppers and an onion. Add one tablespoon of cayenne pepper. Allow to boil for 20 minutes before straining. Use a spray bottle to squirt the liquid around. Spray once in every two or three days or after heavy downpour. The foul odor is enough to repel the raccoons away and can make sure you have an enjoyable camping outdoors.
5. Clean the area – Keep the campsite clean by removing food spills. Make sure to throw empty containers in tightly closed garbage cans.
6. Burn food remnants – Do not dump or throw peelings, bones or used grease on the ground. Do not bury them in the ground. Burn them while there is fire in the pit. Pick food pieces and dispose them properly to avoid attracting not only raccoons but also other animals and insects.
7. Keep the fire burning – Maintain a low fire at the camp to discourage raccoons from hovering around the area.
8. Use unscented toiletries – Bring along unscented deodorant and toothpaste with mild flavouring. Seal them in containers after each use. Avoid spillage or using them near the campground to mislead the raccoons from detecting the scent and discovering your camping site.
9. Commercial cat and dog repellent products – Sprinkle the granules of these pest control products from home around the camp perimeter every other day of the camping period. The granules can serve as effective barrier to prevent the raccoons from crossing over to your camp site.
10. Ammonia – Soak five tennis balls with ammonia. Place the balls in strategic locations around the camp site to spread the ammonia scent. While it smells clean for humans, the odor is unbearable for raccoons to cause them to stay away from your camping outdoors.
11. Create two campsites – Erect your tent at a convenient distance away from the cooking and dining area. Even if raccoons ransack the campsite, they are more likely to concentrate where traces of food can be found.