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Beer drinking racoons cause havoc in Germany

Beer-drinking racoons are causing tens of thousands of euros of damage in Germany, it has been reported.

According to reports in The Telegraph, some homeowners have seen up to £8,600 worth of damage caused by the creatures coming into their kitchens and eating food and drinking booze.

Local media reports in Germany said that the beer drinking during rampages through properties occurred alongside eating pets and fish, as well as causing general damage.

Berthold Langenhorst from the environment association Nature and Biodiversity Conservation Union, (NABU), said “raccoons are funny and clever… and they like beer”. He explained how he had seen the furry creatures knocking over beer bottles at lake side to get at the booze inside.

It follows reports of a racoon being drunk at Erfurt’s Christmas market several years ago.

Racoons were introduced into the country during the Weimar Republic, although it is claimed that the Nazis were the first to introduce them into the wild. Estimates have placed the current figure at around 1,000 racoons living in Berlin alone, where they are found living in allotment gardens and schools.

According to the National Hunting Association (DJV), it killed 200,000 racoons in 2022 to try and reduce the number, which had risen from less than 10,000 around twenty years ago.

Frederik Thoelen of Natuurhulpcentrum, a Belgian conservation and environmental protection charity, told The Times: “Ten years ago we occasionally received a report, but then it often concerned escaped animals from people who illegally kept a raccoon as a pet.

“But now we see a lot more sightings coming in, and those are raccoons that were born in the wild.”

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