Yes. The Documentaries, Guardians of the Galaxy 1 and 2, showed that a raccoon can evolve into a killing machine.
Our only course of action is obviously to declare war on all raccoons before they take over the galaxy.
> Raccoons are noted for their intelligence, with studies showing that they are able to remember the solution to tasks for at least three years.
> In the wild, raccoons often dabble for underwater food near the shore-line. They then often pick up the food item with their front paws to examine it and rub the item, sometimes to remove unwanted parts.
> Because of their intelligence and nimble forelimbs, even inexperienced raccoons are easily capable of unscrewing jars, uncorking bottles and opening door latches, with more experienced specimens having been recorded to open door knobs.
> Raccoons are exceptionally smart animals. They are capable of hunting and killing animals a lot larger than them, and they can also subdue dangerous and poisonous snakes.
> Raccoons use tools to kill their prey. It is well known fact, and it has been very well documented that raccoons us items such as rocks to kill snakes. A raccoon will grab a rock and use it to smash the snake’s head. This way, a raccoon will more easily subdue the animal, without risking to get in touch with its venom or get bitten. Raccoons use tools to dig tunnels, which helps them to get in and out of spaces un noticed. They will grab and use sticks and rocks to remove any obstacles on their way, which will help them manage to overcome these obstacles in a lot faster and easier way.
> Two of the four raccoons that got the marshmallow during training then learned on their own to pick up stones off the ground and drop them into the water to get a reward. A third raccoon surprised the scientists by [i]inventing an entirely new method for solving the problem[/i]. She found a way to overturn the entire, very heavy, tube and base to get the marshmallow reward.
> We found raccoons to be innovative in many aspects of this task, and we observed diverse, investigative behaviours that are unique to raccoons
Tl;dr they're pretty intelligent already and with some social development could probably match us.
I had already found some of that on my own; but most of it was news to me! Thank you!
(OTOH I was also intrigued by the documentaries Q mentioned. When I first saw them I thought they were fiction!)
Posted May 18th