Jess got the closest to answering this edition of “Identify the species.”
These are newborn crab-eating raccoons (Procyon cancrivorus).
What’s a crab-eating raccoon?
Well, it’s the other species of raccoon.
Yep. There are two of them.
Procyon lotor is the raccoon we North Americans know best. It is larger and shaggier. It also has a greater tendency to put on fat– an important adaptation to raccoons that live where winters can be long and harsh. The newborns of this species look a bit like these little crab-eating raccoons, but they are darker in color.
Crab-eating raccoons are native to Panama and Costa Rica and much of northern South America, as well as Trinidad and Tobago. They are smaller and more slightly-built animals with shorter coats.
I was not aware of a second raccoon species until a few years ago. I saw a documentary about Brazilian animals, and it very briefly showed a raccoon.
In the days before Google was available, I played around on the old search engines until I got an answer.