Spatial and temporal relationships among members of a raccoon (Procyon lotor) population were studied during spring and summer in east-central North Dakota during 1973-1975. Radio telemetry was used to locate 48 raccoons 6443 times. Livetrapping results and other observations suggested that most raccoons in the area were radio equipped; densities were estimated to be 0.5-1.0 resident/km2. Adult males maintained large areas relatively exclusive of other adult males; they seldom were located within 3 km of each other even though their home ranges abutted. One adult male responded to the death of an adjacent adult male by shifting movements into the dead male's former home range. Two or more parous or pregnant females resided within the home ranges of a single adult male. All yearling males showed signs of dispersal in May, June, or July, some occupied exclusive areas as adults in the following year. Parous or pregnant females (six adults, one yearling) occupied extensively overlapping home ranges but were never located with other adult or yearling raccoons. Nulliparous yearling females did not disperse and tolerated other raccoons. Territoriality is indicated among adult males probably in response to competition for access to females.
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Aspects of raccoon (Procyon lotor) social organization