Opening weekend of this year’s Wisconsin raccoon season was bitter, but oh so sweet. It opened Friday night at midnight, but the high winds were going to be a huge factor against me. As midnight approached I released my Bluetick hound, Betty Lou. The winds were gusting in the 40mph range, and if it were not for my Garmin GPS tracking system the hunt would have been impossible. At five minutes after midnight the tracking unit notified me that Betty Lou was treed. I made the 500 yard walk until I was standing under a large white pine. I shone my flashlight beam searching the branches for the glowing blue eyes of a raccoon. After five minutes of searching with no luck, I disappointedly leashed up Betty Lou and headed for the truck to call it a night.
The next night was nothing more than high winds and rain, so I decided to pass on hunting. Sunday night came with more wind, but the rain had passed and I was itching to get back out. I decided to head to a small wooded lot that was along a cornfield. This location was obviously a good decision because it only took minutes for Betty Lou to strike a track. Soon her choppy bark let me know she had a raccoon treed. I had high hopes as I walked toward her because the woodlot was mostly oak trees and the last few days of high winds had knocked a lot of the leaves off; it was not only easy to find the raccoons hiding in the branches, but it was ideal conditions to harvest my first raccoon with my .25 cal Marauder PCP airgun. I arrived at the tree and shone my flashlight into the branches. There he was, his two glowing eyes looking right back at me.
I lined up the crosshairs between the raccoon’s eyes and squeezed the trigger. The shot knocked the raccoon out of the tree stone cold dead. I could tell he was a very dark colored raccoon as I was walking toward him, but it wasn’t until I was standing over him that I realized that he was completely black. I couldn’t believe my luck! My first pellet gun raccoon turned out to be an even more unique trophy than what I had set out to get. My Marauder is becoming my favorite small game and pest control gun.