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Procyon lotor

Basic information
Scientific name Procyon lotor

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Common names Common Raccoon
Higher taxon Procyonidae, Carnivora, Mammalia
Natural range North to Central America (southern Canada to Panama).
Habitat Urban area to forest, marshy area, etc. Nesting in tree hollow, cave, human house, etc.
Invasion information
Range in Japan Almost entire Japan Range in Japan
Origin North America
Date The first naturalization originated from 12 escaped animals from a zoo in Inuyama, Aichi Pref., in 1962. Since late 1970s, release and escape of pet animals occur throughout the entire Japan, when Procyon lotor was popular as a pet animal probably due to a TV cartoon influence.
Route Deliberate: Escape from zoo, escape and release of pet animals.
Impact Predation. Competition. Interference of bird nesting. Damage on agriculture (especially corn). Damage on building structures including cultural properties. Carrying parasites including zoonosis (canine madness, distemper, Stronglyloides procyonis, Baylisascaris procyonis, influenza, Japanese B encephalitis, leptospiruria, spotted fever group rickettsia, salmonella, etc.)
Native organism(s) affected: Native mammals such as Nyctereutes procyonoides and Vulpes vulpes (competition), birds, reptiles, amphibians, insetcts, crustaceans
Regulation in Japan Import, transport and keeping are prohibited in Japan by the Invasive Alien Species Act.
Introduced range in other countries Germany, France, Denmark, Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Austria, Hungary, Poland, Czech, Belarus, Russia, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Bahama Islands, etc.
Reference Notes
  • Abe (ed) (1994) A Guide to Mammals of Japan. Tokai Univ. Press, Hatano (in Jpn)
  • Biodiversity Center of Japan (ed) (2005) Procyon lotor, 7th National Survey on the Natural Environment (Accessed on 2012-6-28) (in Jpn)
  • DECO (ed) (2006) Dictionary of Alien Species. Tokyo-Shoseki, Tokyo (in Jpn)
  • Ecol Soc Jpn (ed) (2002) Handbook of Alien Species in Japan. Chijinshokan, Tokyo (in Jpn)
  • Ikeda (2000) Toward fundamental management of invasive racoons. Jpn J Conserv Ecol. 5(2), 159-170 (in Jpn)
  • Ikeda et al. (2001) Home ranges of invasive raccoons in Nopporo Forest Park. J Coll Dairying, Nat Sci. 25(2), 311-319 (in Jpn)
  • JWRC (ed) (2008) A Photographic Guide to the Invasive Alien Species in Japan. Heibonsha, Tokyo (in Jpn)
  • Kaneda & Kato (2011) A threat to amphibians and reptiles by invasive alien racoons. Bull Herpetol Soc Jpn. 2011(2), 148-154 (in Jpn)
  • Ministry of the Environment, Japan. The Invasive Alien Species Act (Accessed on 2012-6-28)
  • Shiiba Research Forest, Kyushu Univ (2005-2008) Database, Shiiba Research Forest, Kyushu Univ. (Accessed on 2012-3-24) (in Jpn)
  • Long (2003) Introduced Mammals of the World: Their History, Distribution, and Influence. CABI Publishing.
  • Ohdachi et al. (eds) (2009) The Wild Mammals of Japan. Shokado, Kyoto.
  • Nakamura (1988) Alien Animals of Japan. Kanagawa Pref. Mus., Yokohama (in Jpn)
  • Wilson & Reeder (eds) (2005) Mammal Species of the World 3rd ed. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore (Accessed on 2010-12-02)
  • Yamada et al. (eds) (2011) Invasive Alien Mammals in japan: Biology of Control Strategy and Conservation. Univ. Tokyo Press (in Jpn)
  • etc.
100 of the Japan’s Worst Invasive Alien Species