Smart trash bins outsmarted by smarter trash pandas

A possibly apocryphal but nonetheless correct statement from a Yosemite National Park Ranger about bear-proofing trash cans is that "There is considerable overlap between the intelligence of the smartest bears and the dumbest tourists." They could just as easily be talking about a smaller trash-loving scavenger, the raccoon.

Toronto is the raccoon capital of the world, with an average of three hundred raccoons per square kilometer, which certainly sounds like a lot of raccoons. Raccoons, being raccoons, spend much of their time rummaging through garbage bins. In 2016, the city spent 31 million dollars to develop a raccoon-proof bin. What they ended up with were bins that were "raccoon-resistant." 

Side note: either this Youtuber has an unusual accent, or I have been pronouncing the word raccoon weirdly my entire life. Another possibility is that I am experiencing semantic satiation due to hearing the word raccoon too many times today.  

The new bins have curbed the raccoon problem, but a small subset of raccoons seem to be able to defeat them. Suzanne MacDonald, an "animal behaviourist and known raccoon sympathizer," who participated in testing prototypes of the new bins, told the Toronto Star that she "believed that with every effort we make to thwart the raccoons, we may be helping to make them smarter, creating an uber-raccoon." As a fellow raccoon sympathizer, I welcome our adorable masked overlords. They can hardly be worse than humans.

Previously: Silly raccoon flips into handstand — then continues to walk upside-down on front paws