Raccoons are spreading across Earth—and climate change could help
The voracious invaders are found on three continents, and warming could help their range expand northward.
Much of the world is hospitable for raccoons, and the potential range of these masked invaders is set to expand into new areas with climate change, according to new research.
A study published in Scientific Reports looked at what climatic conditions are most suitable for these native North American mammals, in areas where they are currently found. The scientists then extrapolated across the globe to find where environment variables were likely to support populations of the animals—and how that will change with global warming.
The scientists found favorable climatic conditions for the adaptable, voracious omnivores in much of the world, in a zone that is expected to expand considerably to the north, says Vivien Louppe, study lead author and