This refers to a masked palm civet which is about the size of a house cat. The animal is quite vicious. Japan does not have many species of wild animals. The largest are probably the two types of kuma or bears, then come the inoshishi or wild boar, the shika or deer, kitsune or fox, tanuki or raccoon, itachi or ferret, saru or monkey and usagi which is a seldom seen long eared rabbit.
At least one hakubishin visited the tomato greenhouse a few nights ago and chewed up the insides of nice ripe tomatoes. In response blue netting was stretched around three sides of the greenhouse leaving the entrance side accessible. A steel trap was set up inside the door and the next day the trap had vanished. Last night another trap was set up. Sure enough our masked bandit could not resist the smell of fresh red tomatoes and ended up caught in the trap. Infuriated the intruder tore the vinyl of the doors and front wall to shreds. Netting had to be thrown over the animal to partially subdue it followed by dispatching it with a hammer. Cruel, maybe, but animal proofing the greenhouse against such a determined creature is virtually impossible.