Baby raccoons reappear on Isles of Capri

Ann Hall

Here’s an update on the three little raccoon babies on the Isles of Capri who lost their mother because of the wounds suffered by a bottle stuck on her front leg.

This message arrived on the Coconut Tele from Evelim Middlebrook, a member of the family who trapped the mother in hopes of saving her life and that of her young.

Her message is so heart-warming, and one that I feel readers who were following the story might like to hear.

From Evelim Middlebrook: “Beau and I wanted to let you know that we saw the baby raccoons in our backyard last weekend. We were very happy to know that they are doing OK, even though they are missing their momma.

“Every time I look in our backyard, I think about her,” she said. “I named her ‘Vitoria,’ a Portuguese name for victory, because to me she was victorious for surviving as long as she did with the glass hurting her so badly. I can only imagine how painful it was for her.

“I know she is not the first nor will she be the last animal to get hurt,” Evelim Middlebrook added, “but it heals my heart to know that together we can try to help some of these animals that make Isles of Capri a beautiful place to be.”

Wildlife lovers were elated 10 days ago, as the mother raccoon that had stuck her right foot in a beer bottle on the Isles of Capri was captured by the Beau Middlebrook family and rushed to a local wildlife hospital.

But the story has a sad ending. Because the raccoon’s leg was so badly injured, she had to be euthanized after being examined at the hospital.

The Middlebrooks had been trying diligently to come to the aid of the mother raccoon and her three little ones seen in their backyard for the better part of a month. The mother had stuck her right front leg into a beer bottle, and seemingly tried to free herself by hitting it against something. The bottle broke and then became a weapon stuck on her leg that could have injured her as well as her three babies.

There was this update the same day that the mother raccoon was trapped.

“Ann, I have a heavy heart as I give you an update on the raccoon with the bottle stuck on its leg. Beau and Evelim finally caught her last night and I brought her to the Conservancy's von Arx Wildlife Hospital this morning when they opened,” wrote Jodi Fernandez, who helped transport the raccoon.

“After sedating her and breaking the bottle off her right front leg it was obvious even to me that the outcome wasn't going to be good,” said Fernandez. “Her entire leg was dead from the neck of the bottle constricting the blood flow. I took photos but I know most people wouldn't want to see how horrible it looked. Amputation wasn't an option for its survival so humane euthanasia was the only option for this beautiful girl.”

When told early this week that the little raccoons had been reappearing in the same Capri neighborhood, Fernandez said:

“Well, Ann and Evelim, you having me crying,” Fernandez emailed. “I am so happy to know that the babies were in the Middlebrooks’ yard again and are doing well. Evelim, the fact that you named the momma has touched my heart. I just love people who care about animals. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

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