As I reported in the September 14 installment of the PAWS Blog, the Raccoons that grew up here at PAWS over the summer are now returning to their wild homes. I released another group on September 26 at a King County Natural Area along the Green River. Three of the Raccoons were especially adventurous, and after fording a small stream they proceeded to climb up into the branches of a large fir tree. They were extremely animated at first, touching, sniffing and exploring all that the tree had to offer. Then they noticed that humans were still standing on the other side of the stream, watching them. I took the following photo after they made this realization.
I can't help but anthropomorphize a little bit and imagine that those expressions are saying, "What are you still doing here?" Imagined or not, we acquiesced to that sentiment and left the young Raccoons to continue exploring the tree in our absence.