Raccoon – Rolling Up Sod

Q: I live in a rural subdivision in Rockdale County. We back up to the Yellow River, so we see a lot of deer. I had ten pallets of zoysia sod installed in early October. Every day for the last couple of weeks I come out each morning to find that the deer have rutted around in my new sod during the night. Apparently they’re looking for food of some sort, rolling back the sod pieces.

A: Deer do lots of damage but this is not their work. You’re seeing raccoon damage. They can neatly peel back newly-laid sod while looking for earthworms or grubs.

You have two courses of action:

1. Remove the raccoon.

Why? Because raccoons are commonly found infected with rabies, and while yours may not be rabid, it has become accustomed to being around humans. If it DOES become sick, you and the neighbors and nearby pets run a risk of being infected.

Call your local Animal Control office and ask their advice. You could also hire a professional animal control company to do the job.

2. If the raccoon is not a frequent visitor, you could secure the sod to keep it from being rolled up again

This is easy to do using bird net or chicken wire. Lay the mesh over the sod and anchor it down with U-shaped “hairpins” made from wire clothes hangers. Be generous with the anchors: one every six inches along the edge of the covering.

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