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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

Not Just Pests

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MassMedia/Creative Commons
Raccoons save lives

They may be bothersome and downright destructive, but did you know that raccoons can remember the solution to a specific task for up to three years after they’ve learned it? Yes, they go through our garbage and sure, they always leave a mess, but according to a 1908 study in which raccoons showed they can open all sorts of complex locks fairly quickly, the little fur balls actually understand the abstract concept of locking mechanisms, which is more than could be said for some humans. Raccoons can also help people. In 1990 a selfless raccoon saved the life of Cornell student Lisa Nelson when it allowed her to land on top of it after she fell 75 feet off of a gorge. Nelson broke her wrist but was otherwise unharmed. The raccoon died of complications six months later, but its memory lives on. Although we may give them little to no thought, and most of us didn’t even celebrate last Friday’s holiday, there is a lot to appreciate about raccoons.

About the Contributor
Shira Kaminsky served as the following positions for The Mass Media the following years Editor-in-Chief: Spring 2012; 2012-2013 Managing Editor: Fall 2011 Arts Editor: Fall 2010