A photo of a cozumel raccoon drinking water
A photo of a Cozumel Pygmy Raccoon drinking from a water source
Raccoon Classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Mammalia
Order: Carnivora
Family:  Procyonidae
Genus: Procyon
Species: Pygmaeus
Scientific Name

Procyon pygmaeus

Conservation status

Critically Endangered



Body size

6-8 lbs

23-32 inches long




Native habitat

The Cozumel raccoon, as its name suggests, lives exclusively on the island of Cozumel of the coast of Quintana Roo in Mexico. These pygmy raccoons mainly reside in mangrove forests and sandy wetlands, however, Cozumel Raccoons have also been seen in semi-evergreen forests and agricultural lands. 


The diet of the Cozumel raccoon, like other types of raccoons, is determined by the food available in its habitat. This means that the Pygmy raccoon’s diet is mostly made up of native fruits and other vegitation, crustaceans, insects, and lizards. 

Rad Raccoon Facts!

Crabs make up the majority of a Cozumel raccoon’s diet

Pygmy raccoons are an example of Insular, or island, dwarfism. Insular dwarfism is a phenomenon where animals evolve to become smaller over time due to lack of space and resources on an island

Raccoons have four, or even five times more sensory cells in their hands compared to most other mammals. 

The only way to keep Cozumel raccoons from going extinct is to acknowledge their existence, put protections in place for them, and determine how the tourism industry can coexist with the pygmy raccoons

Very little is known about the Cozumel Raccoon
The Cozumel raccoon, also known as the Pygmy raccoon, is a critically endangered species. There only around 250-300 remaining Pygmy raccoons on the entire planet, and they are only found on the island of Cozumel of the coast of Quintana Roo in Mexico.

Cozumel raccoons are marked similarly to the common raccoon, however, they are easy to distinguish due to their broad black throat and golden yellow tail. The main difference in the Cozumel raccoons’ appearance, however, is their size.  Adults range from 23-32 inches in length, and weigh around 6-8lbs. 

The tourism industry is the number one threat to Cozumel raccoons, and there is no protected land for these rare animals. There has been very little research on the subject of Cozumel raccoons. Because of this, not much else is known about them. There are currently no laws protecting Cozumel raccoons, despite them being so close to extinction, nor are there any Cozumel raccoons in zoos. 

We are passionate about the conservation of all Procyonids, and are actively looking for ways to ensure the survival of Cozumel/Pygmy raccoons. Please reach out to us if you are a researcher studying Cozumel Raccoons, or if you work in the tourism and hospitality industry in Cozumel and are interested in finding ways Cozumel Raccoon conservation can coexist with tourism. You can best reach us regarding this topic by emailing our Registrar at nessie@exoticpetwonderland.org.