Opossums are charming creatures in the wild, but when they decide to take up residence in your home, they can become a nuisance. Swift action is crucial to maintain a pest-free environment. In this article, we’ll share effective strategies on how to get rid of opossums from your property and ensure a peaceful living space.

Understanding Opossums and Their Habits

Opossums, scientifically known as Didelphimorphia, are fascinating creatures with a distinctive appearance and intriguing behaviors. As marsupials, they carry their young in a pouch, much like kangaroos and koalas. Despite their somewhat intimidating appearance, these animals are relatively harmless and can be beneficial to ecosystems due to their natural role as scavengers.

Opossums are primarily nocturnal animals, meaning they are most active during the night. Their night-time habits are often misunderstood, leading to various misconceptions about their behaviors. These creatures have an omnivorous diet, meaning opossums eat both plant matter and small animals. This adaptability in their diet is one of the reasons they’re drawn to residential areas.

Why Opossums Are Attracted to Residential Areas

The urban sprawl encroaching on natural habitats has inadvertently created an environment that opossums find appealing. The availability of food, shelter, and water in human settlements has contributed to their increased presence in suburban and urban neighborhoods.

Opossums are opportunistic feeders, and their diet can include anything from insects and small rodents to fruits and vegetables. They’re particularly attracted to areas where food is easily accessible. Pet food left outside, fallen fruits from trees, and improperly secured garbage can be enticing sources of sustenance for these creatures. Furthermore, the cozy nooks and crannies around homes provide suitable shelter for them, especially in colder months.

Ethical Considerations and Humane Solutions

When dealing with opossum infestations, it’s important to approach the situation of opossum control methods ethically and humanely. Opossums are part of our ecosystem, playing a role in controlling insect populations and cleaning up organic debris. This understanding should guide our efforts to manage their presence without causing unnecessary harm.

As we strive to eliminate opossums from our homes, it’s crucial to remember that their presence is often a result of our own actions. Instead of resorting to harmful tactics, focusing on prevention, removal, and coexistence can lead to a better outcome for both humans and opossums. In the following sections, we’ll delve into effective strategies to identify and address opossum infestations while keeping their well-being in mind.

4 Key Identifiers For An Opossum Infestation

Detecting an opossum infestation in its early stages is essential for timely intervention. Opossums are nocturnal creatures, so their activities often go unnoticed until signs become evident during daylight hours. Being able to identify these signs can help you address the issue before it escalates. Here’s what to look for when determining if opossums have taken up residence in your surroundings:

Droppings: Opossum droppings are a clear indication of their presence. Their droppings are relatively large, cylindrical in shape, and may contain remnants of the animals’ varied diet. Unlike the pellet-like droppings of rodents, opossum feces are more irregular and can measure around two to three inches in length. These droppings can often be found near potential food sources, such as pet food dishes or areas with fallen fruits.

Tracks: Opossum tracks can provide valuable evidence of their movements. Their feet have opposable thumbs, which gives their tracks a distinctive appearance. Each foot has five toes, and their hind foot leaves a larger print with an elongated heel. The tracks may be visible in soft soil, mud, or even in the snow. By identifying these tracks, you can get an idea of their pathways and potential entry points.

Property Damage: Opossums are skilled climbers and can access roofs, attics, and crawl spaces with ease. Look for signs of property damage, such as torn insulation, chewed wires, or disturbances in attic spaces. Opossums might also create nests using materials they find in your surroundings.

Nocturnal Noises: While opossums are generally quieter compared to other pests, you might hear rustling or scratching sounds at night if they’re present in your home. These noises can indicate their movements in hidden areas like attics or walls.

Ten Strategies for Opossum Prevention

1. Secure Your Trash

Opossums are drawn to readily available food sources, and one way to deter them is by taking steps to secure your trash effectively. Opt for durable trash cans equipped with tightly fitting lids that are difficult for opossums to pry open. This simple precaution can significantly deter opossums and reduce the attraction these creatures feel towards your garbage and help keep them from rummaging through it.

2. Eliminate Food Sources

Mitigating the appeal of your property to opossums involves eliminating potential food sources. Indoor storage of pet food during the night ensures that opossums cannot find food and aren’t enticed by the scent. Additionally, refraining from leaving bird feeders out overnight can further discourage their visits. By removing these accessible food options, you lessen the likelihood of opossums frequenting your premises, creating an environment less conducive to their presence.

3. Seal Entry Points

Safeguarding your home from opossum intrusion starts with a thorough inspection of your property. Identify any gaps or openings that could serve as entry points for these creatures. Employ effective solutions like wire mesh and caulk to seal off these gaps and entry points, denying opossums the means to infiltrate your home and property.

4. Install Motion-Activated Lights and Sprinklers

Exploit opossums’ nocturnal nature by incorporating strategic deterrents. Motion-activated lights illuminate the night and discourage these creatures, even small animals which are adverse to bright illumination. Equally effective are motion-triggered sprinkler systems that deliver sudden bursts of water, capitalizing on opossums’ aversion to water and steering them clear of your yard.

5. Trim Overhanging Trees

Opossums are adept climbers, often utilizing overhanging tree branches to gain access to your dwelling. Counter their climbing efforts by trimming back branches that are in close proximity to your roofline. By reducing the availability of these natural pathways, you make it more challenging for opossums to scale trees and gain entry to your property, further enhancing your pest prevention strategy.

6. Set Up Traps

Employing live traps is a humane and efficient approach to dealing with opossums. To maximize their effectiveness, bait these traps with appealing foods like fruits, canned cat food, or peanut butter. Once captured, it’s essential to handle the situation carefully, as opossums may become stressed. Seeking guidance from local wildlife removal experts for proper and safe opossum removal is recommended to ensure the well-being of both the captured animal and your property.

7. Use Natural Repellents

Crafting your own repellents can prove valuable in deterring opossums from your vicinity. A concoction of garlic and chili pepper, when strategically sprayed around potential entry points, can create an odor barrier that discourages their presence. These natural ingredients are environmentally friendly and can help as much as chemical repellents to dissuade opossums from approaching your property without causing harm to the opossums and other animals.

8. Employ Fencing

Erecting a sturdy fence around your property acts as a formidable barrier against opossum infiltration. Opt for a fence that stands at least four feet in height to hinder the possums and their climbing ability. Additionally, extending the fence a foot underground can prevent them from burrowing their way in. By fortifying your property with a well-designed fence, you create an effective physical boundary that significantly reduces the likelihood of opossums gaining access to your space.

9. Consult a Wildlife Control Professional

Professional wildlife control services have the experience and knowledge to handle opossum removal safely and effectively. They can conduct thorough assessments, implement tailored strategies, and ensure the safe removal of these pests.

10. Maintain a Clean Yard

Keep your yard clean and well-maintained. Remove fallen fruits, secure trash cans, and trim vegetation regularly. By eliminating potential food sources and hiding spots, you reduce the attractiveness of your property to opossums.

Myths and Facts About Opossums

Myth #1: “Opossums Are Aggressive”

It’s important to dispel common misconceptions about opossums. Despite their somewhat intimidating appearance, these creatures are not aggressive by nature. Instead, they have a unique defense mechanism where they often “play dead” to deter potential threats.

Myth #2: “High Opossum To Human Disease Transmission”

While opossums can carry some parasites, it’s worth noting that the likelihood of them transmitting diseases to humans is relatively low. Understanding these myths and facts can help foster a more accurate and informed perspective on opossum behavior and their potential impact on human health.

Contact a Reliable Opossum Removal Expert

Dealing with opossums requires a combination of proactive measures and strategic actions. By understanding their behavior, identifying signs of possum infestation, and implementing the strategies mentioned above, you can effectively get rid of these pests and create a pest-free environment for you and your family. Remember, consistency is key when it comes to opossum prevention, so stay vigilant and maintain the necessary measures to keep these unwanted visitors at bay.

If you’re facing persistent opossum infestations or any other wild animal and require professional assistance, look no further than Pro Wildlife Removal. We are a reliable opossum and wildlife control company. Our dedicated team of experts specializes in humane opossum removal and prevention techniques. We understand the unique behavior of these creatures and employ effective strategies to ensure their safe removal from your property. Don’t let opossums disrupt your peace of mind any longer – contact Pro Wildlife Removal today for the best wildlife removal services.

FAQs

  1. Are opossums dangerous to humans? Opossums are not inherently dangerous and usually prefer to avoid confrontations.

  2. Can opossums carry diseases? While opossums can carry certain parasites, the risk of disease transmission to humans is low.

  3. How do I prevent opossums from entering my attic? Seal any openings, gaps, or damaged vents in your attic to prevent opossums from gaining access.

  4. What should I do if I find baby opossums on my property? Contact local wildlife professionals for advice on how to handle the situation appropriately.

  5. Is it legal to cage-trap opossums and relocate them? Laws regarding live traps and relocating opossums vary by location, so it’s important to research and adhere to local regulations. If unsure, it’s always best to consult a wildlife removal expert.