Central Park’s Raccoons Are Cute, Maybe Dangerous

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According to the New York Post, Manhattan parents are concerned about the increased (or possibly normal) presence of raccoons in Central Park's snack-laden playgrounds. Apparently, the raccoons don't really mind humans, having been spotted "happily munching at afternoon pizza parties and scampering near the swing set" in the middle of the day. And kids don't mind them either, because raccoons are cute. "It just scares me that my daughter has no fear," said one mother. "Who knows what the animals can do?"

Well, give people rabies, for one thing, though the paper says none of the masked mammals found near the park have tested positive for the disease this year. (145 did in 2010, however.) Despite complaints, the Heath Department won't hunt down non-rabid creatures, giving New York parents yet another reason to move to the suburbs, where there are no raccoons.