Raccoon Scales 25-Story Skyscraper

City closely watches daring ascent
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 13, 2018 3:01 AM CDT
Raccoon Scales 25-Story Skyscraper
A raccoon scurries up the side of the UBS Tower in St. Paul, Minn., on Tuesday.   (Evan Frost/Minnesota Public Radio via AP)

Minnesota's Twin Cities were captivated by a daring raccoon that climbed more than 20 stories up a St. Paul skyscraper Tuesday—pausing for plenty of naps along the way. The raccoon, first spotted stuck on a ledge outside another downtown building on Monday, where it had apparently planned to raid pigeon nests, was closely watched by local media as it ascended the nearby UBS bank building after a failed rescue attempt, NPR reports. The animal made it to within a few floors of the top of the building, where live traps had been set, before slowly beginning to climb back down. Onlookers—including some on the building's 23rd floor—provided updates as the raccoon's climb gained national attention, with many worried about its safety, reports the AP.

James Gunn—director of Guardians of the Galaxy, which featured Rocket Raccoon—offered $1,000 to the chosen charity of anybody who saved the raccoon. "I just can't handle this," he tweeted. "Poor dude." An account in the raccoon's name also tweeted, saying, "I made a big mistake." A city spokeswoman says they plan to leave the animal alone to avoid scaring it, which is the approach recommended by wildlife research scientist John Erb. "It sounds like it found itself in an awkward spot," he tells the Star Tribune. "Something could've spooked it and it started to climb ... People may have prevented it from backing its way down." He suggests people stay away from the building overnight. (In Ohio, the raccoons are behaving like zombies, not daredevils.)

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