Just a few days into my Seattle relocation, the friends who generously housed us until we found a place of our own pointed to some ruckus in a tree. Since ruckus in a tree generally signals some sort of animal activity, I grabbed my camera and crept into the shade of a healthy Northwest canopy.
Overhead I saw this … a family of four North American raccoons (Procyon locator), with mama directing the play. I learned they’d been foraging on nearby fruit trees, zeroing in on their favorite Italian prunes. The mother raccoon, maternal and instructive as mother raccoons are, led three growing juveniles on a hunt for sustenance in my friend’s garden.
It was a unique opportunity to watch and photograph a raccoon family in daylight, something that generally only happens during nesting and rearing season when the need for food brings raccoon families into the light, beyond their usual dusky and crepuscular ways.
Most of these photos were all shot in deep shade, at high ISO, with a lot of backlighting from the sun.
Mama raccoon eating Italian prunes off the tree