(WHTM) — As kids, many of us were taught that if we saw nocturnal animals like skunks or raccoons during the daytime that those animals were probably rabid and needed to be killed.
Animal experts say that can be true, but not always, especially this time of year.
During the spring time, a nocturnal animal out during the day is likely a new mother, nursing her babies through the day and night.
“They’ll come out and feed daily, through the daylight, and a lot of them unnecessarily get killed by people because they’re scared of animals,” Mike Ellis of Ellis Wildlife Management said. “And then they’ve got babies perishing in the trees, underground.”
Ellis says there are other, more telling signs that an animal is rabid. They’ll look sick and are likely stumbling and falling over.
Best advice is if you’re not sure, call animal control instead of dealing with the critter yourself.