Pygmy Raccoon

Procyon pygmaeus

Basic Information

Pygmy Racoons can only be found on the Cozomel island, off the coast of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Specificly they live in mangrove trees. These coastal areas are being invaded by tourist development, and other non-native species. They are solitary animals meaning they do not live in groups. Pygmy Raccoonc are also nocturnal, meaning they are most active at night. They are an omnivorous species. Occasionally they will feed on birds or small mammals, but prefer prey that is easier to catch. For example, the eggs from a birds nest, fish, and various amphibians. Their initial population size was less than 1000. It is likely that no more then 300 remain on the Earth. There is not a definite date of when they were discovered they have just always been on the island.

Cause, Effect and Prevention of Extinction

One of the biggest reasons the Pygmy Raccoons are going extinct is because they are being pushed out of their habitats by non-native species and residential and commercial construction. The main predators of the pygmy raccoon are the boa constrictor and both domestic and feral dogs. Also hurricanes are a big threat on the island. Diseases and Parasites also greatly affect the Pygmy Raccoon. If it goes extinct there will be an increase in population in crabs and small insects. Also a decrease in small marine animals such as worms, clams, mussels, snails, and sea urchins. To prevent the extinction of the Pygmy Raccoon the public has to be educated on their increasing risk of extinction, set up protective areas where they can breed in captivity, controlling the numbers of the invasive and problematic species like the boa contractor and roaming cats and dogs. Halting the human development in the region will also help stabilize their population.

Works cited

"Pygmy Raccoon Photos and Facts." ARKive. Wildscreen Arkive, n.d. Web. 18 Feb. 2016.

Cuarón, A.D., de Grammont, P.C., Vázquez-Domínguez, E., Valenzuela-Galván, D., García-Vasco, D., Reid, F. & Helgen, K. 2008. Procyon pygmaeus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2008: e.T18267A7939494.

Schafer, Kevin. "On the Trail of the Pygmy Raccoon." National Geographic. ILCP, 18 Feb. 2014. Web. 18 Feb. 2016.

"Raccoon." - New World Encyclopedia. N.p., 17 June 2015. Web. 19 Feb. 2016.

Westfall, Scottie. "The Cozumel or Pygmy Raccoon." Natural History. Retrieverman, 15 Aug. 2012. Web. 19 Feb. 2016.

Created by Mike Hermes and Ashlyn Ross