Can You Kill Raccoons in Florida?

Creatures like raccoons can be found pretty much everywhere in the United States and although some jurisdictions allow you to kill raccoons with almost no restriction, there are other jurisdictions that will not allow it in under any circumstance.

Florida laws actively forbid the killing of wild animals like raccoons. Breaking these laws will result in up to 1 year of jail and a fine of $5,000. But if there are serious aggravating factors present in the accusation it might escalate to 5 years in prison and a maximum payment of a $10,000 fine.

There are far better methods to deter and prevent raccoons on your property, in this article we are going to cover some of those questions regarding raccoons issues.

How Do You Get Rid of Raccoons in Florida?

Two dead raccoons are being held high by a smiling hunter in the wild after checking a cage trap.
Smiling hunter in front of a cage trap holding high two dead raccoons by their tails.

Getting rid of raccoons in Florida is not that hard at all, but it can be a great annoyance to deal with them. Raccoons can make serious damage to your property and they can represent a serious health hazard when cornered.

You can get rid of raccoons in Florida if they are caught using live traps, as long as you don’t hurt them or treat them with inhumane and cruel conditions, you are within the law.

Is It Legal to Trap Raccoons in Florida?

Under Florida law, it is legal to capture raccoons with live traps and snares, as long as they are checked at least once every 24 hours. So it is completely legal for you to trap raccoons in Florida.

On the other hand, it is completely forbidden and illegal to use steel traps to capture raccoons in Florida. This specie is protected by several rules administered by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Just make sure to follow the law accordingly.

What Should You Do After Capturing a Raccoon?

Under no circumstance, you should release a captured raccoon, even if you take it very far away to a rural area. Animals like raccoons who are caught in live traps should be handed to animal control near you. They will know the proper treatment to be used in those cases.

For more information you can consult our full guide on ‘How to get rid of Raccoons.’

Can You Own a Raccoon in Florida?

You can own a raccoon as a pet in Florida. You will need an issued license to do it so. You need to make your requisition to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).

This will promote safety between your animal and everyone nearby. You will also need to take it to the vet, in order to comply with the proper due diligence.

What States Can You Legally Own a Raccoon In?

You can have a pet raccoon in the following states:

  • Arkansas,
  • Delaware,
  • Florida,
  • Indiana,
  • Michigan,
  • Nebraska,
  • Oklahoma,
  • Pennsylvania,
  • Rhode Island,
  • South Carolina,
  • Texas,
  • West Virginia,
  • Wisconsin,
  • and Wyoming.

Don’t forget to check the regulations for each jurisdiction as they might change from state to state.

Should You Kill Trapped Raccoons?

You should not kill any trapped raccoons unless they represent a nuisance to you. Even so, to kill a raccoon you must hold a valid hunting license, other than that it is strictly forbidden to kill raccoons, as they are a protected species.

Can You Kill a Raccoon in Your House?

Unless a raccoon represents an imminent threat, you have no right to kill a raccoon in your house. Try to keep it locked in a division and call animal control, they are experts in dealing with these situations and will get rid of that raccoon in no time.

What Should You Do if You See a Raccoon in My Yard?

When in doubt remove yourself from your yard, if you have pets keep them inside your house too. Don’t hesitate in calling animal control to handle that situation for you. Remember you cannot kill or hurt any raccoon that comes by.

Raccoons that don’t represent a threat will not attack but should be removed from your property nevertheless.

Is It Safe to Have Raccoons in Your Yard?

A raccoon is not a dangerous creature per se unless it is threatened or cornered. But like all wild animals, raccoons must be treated that way even if not aggressive. Raccoons can transmit and spread rabies, this is why you should never handle them by yourself.

They can also bite your pets and your children, so it is definitely a no go situation. It is not safe to have raccoons in your yard, if they are not leaving call animal control services, they will get rid of raccoons in no time.

What Is the Best Way to Get Rid of Raccoons in Florida?

You can do this by starting to prevent the evasion of raccoons, and always keep your property clean. Do not leave trash laying around and always seal any point of entry. Raccoons might even enter in your backyard, but if you don’t have any resources of interest they end up leaving.

What Time of Night Do Raccoons Come Out?

Mammals like raccoons are nocturnal creatures. They scavenge and hunt for food between dusk till dawn. If you find one raccoon alone, it’s typically a male. They tend to be very solitary. Female raccoons usually stay together with their young ones.

If you hear a lot of noise, chances are there is a small group of raccoons trashing your place around. They can be easily scared away, but if the resources they are looking for remain at hand, they will surely come back.

Will Raccoons Leave On Their Own?

As long as there are precious resources such as water, food, and shelter, wild raccoons will continue to appear on your property. Raccoons are lazy creatures who just want to eat, chill and thrive. If you give them freely the perfect conditions to do it, they will camp for sure.

You should eliminate all sources of food and water that raccoons might use to their benefit. Also, make sure to seal all the possible entrances so they won’t be nesting around, and they won’t have any alternative but to go somewhere else.

How Do You Humanely Get Rid of Raccoons in Florida?

One of the most humane ways to get rid of raccoons in Florida is to take them to veterinarian services so they can be euthanized. This way you are insuring that the raccoon will not suffer nor will endanger any other live species such as pets and other household animals.


Dealing with wild raccoons can really be a serious challenge, especially if they are a constant threat to you and your family. But as you can see even if you cannot kill them in Florida, there are some solutions you can work out in case they appear on your property.

Do not hesitate in calling professional services if you are having a raccoon problem. Sometimes that is the better alternative than dealing with the subject by yourself. Stay under the law on this one, it’s not worth the risk and you won’t make any wild animal suffer unnecessarily.