A Minnesota raccoon captured the interest of the world beginning on Tuesday morning after he decided to scale a Minnesota skyscraper in St. Paul. It has been described as the Spider Man version, complete with observers holding their collective breaths as the critter climbed higher and higher.
When he was spotted a few stories up huddled close to the wall and appearing quite frightened, tensions arose. By lunchtime, he had made it up to the 12th story of the UBS Tower. According to onlookers, and quite possibly followers of the little masked bandit, the climbing critter had been spotted on another building just days ago, most likely on a search for food. Minnesota Public Radio reporter Time Nelson tweeted:
“likely on an errant mission to raid pigeon nests on the skyway.”
The animals have strong claws and feet, although they do not usually scale tall buildings. This little guy may have said “uh oh” but knew he had to keep going upward.
And so up he went, with Twitter followers gasping every few minutes as the raccoon climbed higher and higher and the news continued to spread about the little guy’s dangerous plight. By the time he reached the 22nd floor, it was time for a rest. Pedestrians gathered on Seventh Street in St. Paul to watch, and although everyone wanted to help, what could they do? The windows in the building don’t open and sending window washers up wasn’t an option. Animal Control stated they would trap him, but couldn’t do so until he climbed to the roof. Someone even offered a $1,000 reward for the critter’s safe rescue and capture.
Later that afternoon, the raccoon made it to the 23rd floor. Even St. Paul’s mayor tweeted:
“Even wild animals know @cityofsaintpaul is a great place to reach for higher heights. We’re working with staff & building owner to find a way to help #MPRraccoon without further endangering it or staff by scaring or making it feel threatened.”
News reports were full of speculation, and then in the late hours came the long awaited announcement that the raccoon had made it to the roof. He was safely caged, and the Twitter account of the office building posted he was safe and “had eaten a post-climb meal, (cat food) and it was now in custody.”
The raccoon was expected to have been freed this morning. What an adventure.