Do Raccoons Live In Sewers

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However, raccoons living in urban and rural areas do not have the luxury of woodland to create dens and caves. Raccoons are one of the more mysterious animals that live among humans. One question that comes to mind is Do Raccoons live in sewers?

Raccoons do not live in sewers. This is a common myth regarding raccoon behavior. Although it is true that raccoons commonly inhabit sewers, they do so more so as a means of transportation and a potential source of food.

This makes sense logically because sewers are not particularly pleasant places to dwell, not even for raccoons. So the question is where raccoons live still stands. Read the full article to learn more about raccoons’ habitats.

Do Raccoons Hide In Sewers?

Sewers are not where raccoons build dens. When food is scarce, they descend into the sewers in search of it or catch food remnants as they float into the openings of sewage drains.

Food frequently drifts down sewer drains and into the sewers. A raccoon will enter the sewage if it is required to get food to survive. Their main objective is to gather enough food and water to stay, just like any other living thing.

Nevertheless, living in the sewers and hunting for food are two entirely different situations.

Raccoons dwell in the wild, dig burrows, or make dens inside tree stumps and hollowed-out trees. However, raccoons living in urban and rural areas lack the convenience of forestry to dig holes and tunnels. Instead, they are forced to adapt and do whatever they can find.

Does Cozumel Raccoon Live In Sewers?

No, Cozumel raccoons also do not live in sewers. The Cozumel raccoon also referred to as the pygmy raccoon, is a severely endangered island raccoon that is only found on Cozumel Island, which is located off the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula.

They often live in confined spaces above ground, such as tree trunks, attics, decks, and other structures.

Raccoons from Cozumel are typically nocturnal and solitary animals, but on occasion, the mother and young may congregate in family groups.

When food is sufficient enough, its near relative, the Common raccoon, may survive in extremely high numbers and does not appear to be territorial.

Raccoons in Cozumel find protection in dens. They can descend from trees head-first since they can swivel their hind feet 180 degrees and are relatively adept climbers.

These animals communicate in a variety of ways. Compared to other animals, they typically use their touch senses more frequently.

Why Do Raccoons Go In Sewers?

Raccoons, like humans and most other animals, have three basic needs for survival: food, water, and shelter. Raccoons are drawn to sweet foods, particularly ripe fruit such as apples, peaches, and plums.

Humans frequently drop food or throw half-eaten food into the trash, making it easy for a raccoon to find food and survive.

 Food frequently floats into sewer drains and then down into the sewers. If necessary, a raccoon will enter the sewer to forage for food to survive. Because of the presence of hydrogen sulfide, typical raccoons cannot survive in sewers for long periods (H2S).

 Raccoons, on the other hand, use sewers and storm drains to get around the city and find food and water, and they may become trapped from time to time. Raccoons prefer to live in hollowed-out logs or trees whenever possible because the tough bark provides good protection from the elements.

Do Raccoons Sleep In Sewers?

No, raccoons do not sleep in sewers. Most raccoons appear to prefer sleeping in large holes in trees or hollow sections of fallen logs. They also seek refuge in abandoned automobiles, attics, crawl spaces, barns, and sheds.

 Raccoons frequently change dens, sometimes moving to a new den every night. On the other hand, they will not make a home in the sewers.

Rats and other vermin are frequently found in sewers. Raccoons will eat rats if necessary, but they prefer not to live among them.

They usually sleep during the day and forage for food at night. Raccoons usually leave their dens shortly after sunset. This is due to their vulnerability to large predators such as wild cats.

Instead, they build dens in trees to sleep in during the day. Raccoons have been protected from predators that cannot climb by staying or sleeping in trees.

Can Raccoon Survive In A Sewer Drain During A Rain Storm?

Yes, raccoons can survive in a sewer drain during a rainstorm. Raccoons, on the other hand, have adapted well to city life as urban and suburban areas have expanded. They frequently live just outside city limits, traveling through storm drains and sewers in search of trash cans and dumpsters that provide quick meals.

Raccoons have been genetically modified to withstand the harsh winter climate. Their bodies store fat to survive, and they may lose 14-50% of their body weight. Aside from accumulating body fat, the animals develop thick warm fur that effectively protects their bodies from the cold.

Small rodents such as raccoons, foxes, mice, rabbits, and others: Underground mammals will seek refuge in their dens. They build dens so they do not flood, allowing wildlife to take shelter at home during a heavy storm.

Where Do Raccoons Live If Not, Live In Sewers?

Raccoons like living in wet, forested regions. However, people can also find a raccoon in urban, suburban, and agricultural settings.

Raccoons often make their dens in trees, but they can also use woodchuck tunnels, caves, mines, abandoned structures like barns and garages, rain sewers, and homes.

They can readily coexist with people. They must have immediate access to water.

During mating season, male raccoons frequently extend their home ranges, likely to include new females’ homes as potential mates. During the mating season, it is occasionally possible to see females briefly denying themselves to males. Males and females do not associate with one another after mating.

The average raccoon doesn’t live past their second year in the wild, yet they can live up to 16 years. Raccoons can live in the wild for an average of five years if they survive their early years. Humans and malnutrition are the leading killers. There is evidence of a captive animal living for 21 years.


Raccoons are a widespread urban animal because they quickly adapt to human environments and gradually lose their fear of people. They can be found in various settings, including cities, woodlands, and deserts.

Raccoons are frequently discovered in Ontario’s storm drains and sewers, but they rarely establish permanent residences there. For lengthy periods, the ordinary raccoon cannot tolerate the potent gases found in sewers, particularly hydrogen sulfate (H2S).

When possible, raccoons prefer to reside within hollowed-out logs or trees because the strong bark offers good protection from outside elements. On the other hand, Raccoons are less concerned with luxury than opportunity and are open to living in different regions.


Roberta K. Newbury, Thomas A. Nelson, Habitat Selection and Movements of Raccoons on a Grassland Reserve Managed for Imperiled BirdsJournal of Mammalogy, Volume 88, Issue 4, 20 August 2007.

Gross, J., Elvinger, F., Hungerford, L.L. et al. Raccoon use of the urban matrix in the Baltimore Metropolitan Area, MarylandUrban Ecosyst 15, 667–682 (2012)

Hirose, M., Yoshida, K., Inoue, E. et al. Population genetic structure of raccoons as a consequence of multiple introductions and range expansion in the Boso Peninsula, JapanSci Rep 11, 19294 (2021)