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Raccoon rescues draw a big crowd

POULSBO — It was something the Orwig family could certainly add to their “what I did on my summer vacation” list.

Among the visitors to Poulsbo’s Marine Science Center July 12, the North Dakota family also got to see some other Northwest life.

About a dozen shoreline visitors Monday afternoon spotted a mother raccoon and four young trapped on pipes beneath the wharf building pier.

“It was kind of freaky because I think raccoons always attack you,” said Audrey Orwig, 11, of her first thought when she spotted the animals in the daylight.

While authorities were summoned, the growing crowd watched the mother raccoon rescue each of her young, one by one. The whole ordeal took about half an hour but Paula Laxson of Bremerton said hearing the cries from the young raccoons made it feel like an eternity.

“I’m telling you, it was very tragic for me, I was panicking and freaking out,” she commented.

When the mother got hold of the final baby, the crowd on the shore erupted with cheers and finally began to disperse. Animal rescue authorities didn’t make it in time to be of any assistance.

Of course, Raymond Orwig, 12, said he didn’t think there was really much danger at all.

“I think the mom was trying to teach them to swim,” he conjectured.

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