A raccoon that scaled an office building in St. Paul, Minnesota, captivating onlookers and generating interest on social media, has been trapped after making it to the roof. Animal control officials were preparing to release it back into the wild.
Onlookers and reporters had tracked the critter's progress at it climbed the UBS Plaza on Tuesday, interrupting work and causing anxiety for some. By Tuesday afternoon, it had stopped on a ledge more than 20 stories high.
Nearby Minnesota Public Radio branded the raccoon with the hashtag #mprraccoon. The woodland creature also had its own Twitter account, with one tweet saying, "I made a big mistake." Many feared for the raccoon's safety.
But the creature finally made it to the top of the building in the early hours Wednesday morning, having first descended several stories, according to journalists tracking its progress.
Chelsey DeMers, assistant general manager of Wildlife Management Services, said the raccoon was caught in a live trap baited with cat food on top of UBS Plaza before dawn Wednesday. Wildlife Management Services provides animal control services for St. Paul.
DeMers said the raccoon was in good condition and able to eat.
A company technician was expected to set it free later in the day at a site yet to be determined, DeMers said. The company would need permission to release it on public property, she said, but could also set it free on private property north of the Twin Cities.
The raccoon was first spotted on a ledge Tuesday morning, just a few stories high. St. Paul Animal Control believed it may have been there all night before it started heading skyward.
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Experts who spoke to Minnesota Public Radio differed on whether the wild animal should be rescued from its perch or allowed to climb down of its own accord. Generally it is not uncommon for raccoons to climb, the experts said.
CORRECTION (June 13, 2018, 10:49 a.m. ET): This story has been corrected to show the building is called UBS Plaza, not UBS Tower.