A Raccoon Answers the
Using a squirrel distress call to
coax out a wary squirrel, I get a
suprise visitor

Jim Chapman
I received permission to hunt a little farm right
outside of town, and got out to the woods a bit after
day break. I worked my way back to an area in
which IÂ’d seen squirrels earlier in the year while
on a pre-season scouting trip. There were several
food trees and a big oak that looked like it might
have a den, set in a flat area with undergrowth
thinning in the early fall season. This was going to
be a pleasant morning, it was a little overcast and
about 60 degrees and I felt sure IÂ’d kick up a
couple of bushytails before too long.

I was set up under a tree with a couple of thick
vines running down in front of me, offering a little bit
more cover and further breaking my outline. After
about twenty minutes I saw the first squirrel of the
morning up in the canopy moving around, but I
could not get a clear shot before I lost him in the
foliage. I waited another ten minutes and saw
nothing, so decided to break out a call and give it a
try. I am getting better with calling as every season
passes, finding that when I know thereÂ’s a squirrel
in the vicinity a call will sometimes bring him out.
So I started with a few barks switching over to a
distress squeal, then waited.

Not more than a minute after I laid the call down I
caught motion out of the corner of my eye, and
slowly turning saw a raccoon heading towards me
at about thirty yards. He saw me move and veered
off running at an angle that presented me with a
quartering shot. I had just charged up my DAQ .25
Outlaw and knew I was getting around 45 – 50 fpe
with the heavy field and trophy pointed hunting
pellets, so quickly lined up the shot and fired. The
coon stumbled, then headed for the closest tree.
He started to climb but fell before starting again to
shimmy up the back side of the tree. At about 25
feet up he moved partially around to my side of the
trunk as he climbed. IÂ’d held my position and
reloaded, and when his head came around the
trunk, I had the scope cranked up to 9x and settled
the crosshairs right on his head. I heard the thump
of the pellet hit home and watched a little puff of fur
as he dropped out of the tree, DOA.

I have had fox, coyote, and a few bobcats come in
when IÂ’ve been calling with a rabbit distress call
while predator hunting. IÂ’ve had coyote and feral
housecats answer when using the squirrel distress
call to lure in squirrel, and coyote come in when IÂ’
ve used a fawn distress call. This was the first time
IÂ’d ever had a raccoon respond, and while it could
have been coincidental it appeared like he was
moving towards me with intent. As a matter of fact
this is only one of a handful of times IÂ’d seen a
raccoon moving about at this time of the morning. I
felt the quartering shot was a good one to take,
even though he was moving at a fairly good clip I
had him lined right up and felt confident I would
place the shot. I also felt that the DAQ Outlaw at 40
yards would deliver the power to put him down, as
IÂ’d found this gun with the aforementioned pellets
would go in one end and out the other of a squirrel.
The first shot was a good lung shot and would have
done the job, but the second (head) shot was
decisive and put him down immediately. While this
was an opportunistic kill, I felt pretty good about it. IÂ’
m generally not inclined to shoot a raccoon, as
taking them over a garbage can at night just
doesnÂ’t appeal to me (and I rather like the masked
bandit). IÂ’m not being judgmental, thereÂ’s nothing
wrong with any type of pest control, just some types
of hunting appeal to me and some donÂ’t. But
besides the fact that the landowner had asked me
to cull some predators, heÂ’d had trouble with
coyote/fox/raccon and his poultry, getting this guy in
daylight while coming in on call was very cool

I am really impressed by this prototype gun Dennis
Quackenbush built for me, it is accurate, powerfull,
and the compact dimensions make it a pleasure to
carry. Originally IÂ’d had the gun built as a break
down to take along when traveling, but IÂ’m finding
that it is now the first gun grabbed when I head out
to the squirrel woods. After snapping a few more
pictures and skinning out the coon (IÂ’m building a
hunting den/trophy room at home and may find a
use for this mini rug) I packed up and headed
home. I figured this was a good way to start and
end my hunt; it is one that will stick in my mind to be
I found a place to settle in and wait for the squirrel I'd spotted
moving about in the upper canopy to come out and give me
shot. Notice I've cut the tips of my gloves on the index finger
and thumb to allow me to manipulate a pellet
The DAQ .25 Outlaw Scores
There were several mast producing trees with a moderate
cover of foliage, At this time of year it is finally thinning out on
the ground and in the trees. However, there are still alot of
insect pest to deal with. I was looking up in trees and calling
when I caught movement out of the corner of my eye
This was not my expected quarry. I haven't seen
many coons abroad in daylight, and never had
one come in on a call. Probably won't see it again.
The first hit was a quartering shot that penetrated a lung.
This staggered him, the head shot anchored him. The
DAQ .25 Outlaw is a very potent carbine indeed!