Late last year, Idaho wildlife officers had a rare encounter near Twin Falls, trapping one of the state’s elusive ringtails. See footage of the unique critter below.
According to Magic Valley, the ringtail was spotted near the Almagated Sugar plant south of Twin Falls in December 2021. Staff at the sugar plant reached out to Idaho’s Department of Fish and Game. Officers later came and trapped it in hopes of relocating the animal to a better environment.
As seen in the clip, ringtails, often called ringtail cats, boast big ears, pointed noses, and long ringed tails. Their facial markings are, in a way, reminiscent of the much more common raccoon.
Lyn Snoddy, a wildlife biologist for Fish and Game, spoke about the creature in length.
“While a lot of people refer to them as ringtail cats,” she said, “they’re actually not a cat at all. They’re more closely related to raccoons and coatis.”
Like raccoons, the Twin Falls ringtail is a small carnivore. He is primarily active at night and consumes things like berries, rodents, birds, and insects. Before releasing this particular ringtail back into the forest south of Twin Falls in an area, which offers plenty of food and protection from predators, biologists involved in the creature’s capture took a small DNA sample from its ear and clipped it with an ear tag, making it possible for conservationists to track the creature if it comes back near the sugar plant.
Per the outlet, the ringtail captured late last year marks only the fifth confirmed sighting in the entire state of Idaho. The first ringtail spotted in Idaho was recorded in 1967 per records from the state’s Fish and Game.
Philadelphia Woman Has Cute Encounter With Twin Fall’s Ringtail’s Distant Cousin
As stated the ringtail located and tagged in Twin Falls last years is extremely rare and elusive, most frequently perusing its hunting grounds at night when humans are least likely to encounter them. However, more recently, a Philadelphia woman, far from Twin Falls in Idaho, had an equally surprising encounter when the much less shy cousin of the ringtail, the common raccoon decided to spend the night on her back porch. The adorable footage has racked up plenty of views online and sees the little carnivore lounging in a hammock.
Philadelphians and Americans nationwide gushed about the friendly raccoon’s antics on Twitter.
“Clearly he wants a blankie,” one Twitter user joked. Another viewer said, “I need a live video of this. I would watch this all day.”
Unlike the Twin Falls ringtail, raccoons are very rarely as shy around humans, and they’ve demonstrated their forthrightness on many occasions before.
Over the summer, another Philadelphia resident had a much less friendly encounter with a raccoon when, while observing one’s babies, was bitten by the female and was forced to take a trip to the hospital. The lesson? Keep your distance from raccoons, ringtails, and wildlife in general.