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Brooklyn's ongoing man vs. beast fight

Residents are scared of their new neighbors — a family of raccoons!

Brooklyn Daily
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Residents of a Flatbush block say their newest neighbors are a bunch of animals — literally!

A family of raccoons has moved into an old garage on E. 23rd Street and Foster Avenue next to the Abraham family, who fear their 4-year-old will strike up a fierce friendship with the varmints.

“My daughter loves animals and I’m afraid she might go towards them if she sees them,” said Auria Abraham. “As cute as they are, they are wild animals.”

The raccoon family, a single parent and three children, have made themselves comfortable in their new digs and are now wandering on her property, Abraham claims.

“I noticed them on Saturday night, and we’ve seen them every night since then,” she said.

The critters make it impossible for her daughter to enjoy the summertime outside the house by herself, said Abraham, who claims that the city won’t do anything about the raccoons until one of the animals chomps down on a hapless victim.

Abraham said when she contacted 311, she was told that the city would only remove the raccoons if she could prove that they were rabid or had attacked someone.

Department of Health spokeswoman Chanel Caraway confirmed what Abraham was told.

“Raccoons don’t pose significant health risks unless they are rabid,” Caraway said.

Anyone seeing a raccoon exhibiting signs of illness should contact 311 so it can be picked up by Animal Care and Control and tested for rabies, Caraway said. If a raccoon attacks someone, residents should call 911.

But since the raccoons on E. 23rd Street seem healthy, Abraham will have to hire a trapper on her own to have the animals relocated.

Abraham says she doesn’t understand why the responsibility for capturing wild animals should fall on Brooklyn residents.

“What would it take for the city to do something?” said the mom. “Would it take someone put in the hospital?”

Lawmakers have proposed multiple pieces of legislation that would force the city to deal with its wily raccoon population, but the bills have gone nowhere.

Reach reporter Eli Rosenberg at erosenberg@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-2531. And follow him at twitter.com/emrosenberg.
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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