By JODY MURPHY
PARKERSBURG -JR Carpenter has had many jobs over the years - most recently as owner/operator of the Crystal Cafe.
Market Street Raccoons
Lately, he's starting to feel more like an animal control officer.
In the last six weeks Carpenter has trapped more than a dozen wild animals just steps from his tree-lined Market Street home. Last Friday afternoon Carpenter was preparing to haul off his latest capture -a large raccoon.
"If I wasn't an old farm boy, I wouldn't be doing this," he said Friday, wearing heavy gloves as he lifted the raccoon-filled animal trap into the back of his truck.
Photos by Jody Murphy
JR Carpenter loads his latest catch — a large raccoon — into the back of his truck to be taken out of the city and released.
A raccoon is one of more than a dozen wild animals captured by Market Street resident JR Carpenter in the last six weeks. Carpenter has caught six possums, three raccoons, a skunk and three cats in the last six weeks.
For more than month Carpenter has been taking the creatures into the country to be released. So far, he's trapped three raccoons, six possums, a skunk and three cats, two of which he suspects were feral.
He's caught the critters with his own traps and little help from officials.
Carpenter said he phoned the police, who referred him to the humane society. Humane society officials referred him the state's Division of Natural Resources.
JR Carpenter has been trapping animals at his Market Street house. His bounty includes:?
3 cats, 2 of which Carpenter suspects were feral.
"The DNR said they would loan me a trap, but they won't come and get them."
Carpenter brought two traps and baited them with old meat, hot dogs and table scraps.
"There for the first week, I was (trapping) something every day," he said.
Carpenter is not surprised by the number of animals he's captured. His house sits next to a large empty home, where he suspects several of the critters have made homes in the foundation where they have easy access to discarded food and neighboring trash cans. "Animals infiltrate everywhere," he said.
Carpenter said he released the raccoons off U.S. 50, near Mountwood Park. The possums were set loose along the Little Kanawha River and the skunk was turned out off Old St. Marys Pike.
The cats he rereleased back onto Market Street- suspecting they were pets.
Upon release, Carpenter thinks two of cats were wild.
"I opened the cage door and they took off out of there," he said.