What are possums and why do people want to get rid of opossums are the most frequently asked questions. Possums are simply ugly animals and don’t smell good. They are a nuisance that exists around your home and garden, especially they love to vandalize furniture and plants. In short, possums are troublesome animals like rats so people are always looking for ways to get rid of them.
How to get rid of possums can be difficult, but as long as you persevere and understand them enough, owning a peaceful living space is completely within reach.
Table of Contents
- What do you need to know about possums?
- How to get rid of possums?
- How to trap a possum?
What do you need to know about possums?
Most people can recognize possums in wildlife species with a white face but a nose and tail resembling a mouse. However, recognizing them does not mean that everyone knows this creature. Perhaps you should take some time to learn about them before they destroy all your furniture and plants. Or simply equip yourself with knowledge to prevent this animal from being able to move in your area. Here is the basic information you need to know about possums, and you should definitely read it.
What is a possum?
The possum is a marsupial that uses it to carry children like other marsupials you know like kangaroos and koalas. Possum is the only mammal in the United States and Canada.
This animal has two big toes that act as two thumbs so they can climb trees easily and faster. This feature in opossum is quite similar to monkeys and other primates.
Especially possum is immune to a lot of things because they have a very good immune system. Since these nutrients are rarely found with rabies viruses, they are not considered a reservoir for Lyme disease and they are 8 times less likely to carry rabies than a wild dog.
Possums are not aggressive animals, but they are enough to trouble your home. One of the common problems with this species is damage to the plants, especially the backyard grass. Once they find grass in your back yard, they will dig to get bushes under the surface and will definitely not stop once. So you will definitely want to know how to keep possums away with the hassle they bring.
Besides, if a possums nest under a porch or warehouse floor, it can be dangerous to pets and children. Possums can destroy floors or other objects so you should be careful with your steps. They often open their mouths wide with sharp teeth in a threatening position for protection, they will not end this position if they still feel the threat.
Although they do not carry dangerous rabies germs, they can carry parasites such as lice or fleas to pets. Nobody wants their beloved pets to be abused by such parasites, so this is really the potential threat that possums bring.
What are the favorite foods of possums?
Possums are omnivores, they can eat anything including garbage and feces. So they can exist anywhere that people live.
The main hunting skills of possums are small beetles such as beetles and small rodents. However, they can also attack larger sized prey with their sharp teeth.
Do possums eat chickens?
Definitely if they have a chance. However, they will tend to be chicks and eggs rather than confronting a large adult chicken. The favorite part of possums on a chicken is the breast and abdomen so they won’t eat the whole chicken.
Besides, possums is also a species that loves to consume plants. Plants never disappear on the list of favorite possums. They will find ways to dig and bite their favorite plants in your garden. So once they like your garden, you’ll have to face a formidable and cunning opponent.
How to get rid of possums?
Possums often live at night and sleep throughout the day so it is difficult for you to deal with them. They tend to live in areas with lots of trees, fields, caves and areas below the floor, so finding their shelters is also a challenge. However, they will leave some signs of their presence through feces, footprints and unusual signs of damage on plants and objects. You can also find them in the pet food area, which is also one of the possums’ favorite foods.
Controlling possums will become easier if you understand them better. We will help you find the simplest and most effective way to eliminate this wildlife from your life.
#1. Natural method
To deal with this wild mammal, you can use some natural methods. Natural methods will not harm family members or affect the environment so they are very safe. Surely you should not miss these good practices.
#1.1 Use dog and cat fur
A great way to distract possums is to use a dog or cat’s fur. It sounds vague but the fact that your pet’s fur is a tool helps prevent possums from entering your home. Collect dog and cat fur after brushing into a net bag, hanging around the fence or garden in your home. When the possum comes in, it will smell the pet’s fur and assume that there is a predator nearby so it will not dare to continue operating in that area. Or change your pet’s fur often so that it smells best.
#1.2 Use crushed garlic
Possums extremely dislike the smell of garlic, especially when they are crushed. Contrary to many people’s preferences, garlic is definitely not a priority list of possums. This pungent aroma makes their nose uncomfortable and unbearable for a long time. So you can use crushed garlic strips around problem areas to keep possums away from your home.
#2. Methods of avoidance
Besides natural methods, avoiding methods is also a simple method to help you prevent and eliminate possums effectively. With this method, you do not need to spend money on expensive items, instead just spend some time to clean and prepare.
#2.1 Eliminate food sources of possums
Like other wild animals, possums come to your home because there is something that appeals to them, which can be a great source of food. So you need to remove the possums from your home to cut off the source of life for them.
Possums are omnivores, they can eat everything from insects, bugs, birds and chicks, pet food, fruits, trash and countless other things. So you should clean your trash daily and use the covered bins to remove the most abundant source of food for possums.
If you have fruit trees in your garden, pick up all the fruit that falls on the ground and clean the area clean. Install a fence around your garden to keep your possums from getting in your way. And don’t forget to clean up all pet food outside, from dog and cat food or bird food. Possums are mostly active at night so be sure to clean them up before going to bed.
#2.2 Eliminate water source
Just like eliminating food sources, removing water is also a job that you should not overlook. Possums love areas that have both trees and water, so if your garden meets that criteria, it will definitely become the ideal home for possums. Removing those sources of water will help you limit the appearance of possums.
#2.3 Remove shelter
Eating, staying, and drinking are the most basic needs for an animal’s life, possums are no exception. Besides removing food and water, you should also remove possums.
Possums prefers places where their white face can be hidden, especially in dimly lit areas. Start in overgrown areas, woodpiles, and humid areas with no light. Blocking crevices under floors, awnings and anywhere that might be the ideal shelter of possums.
#2.4 Using ammonia and bandages
One way to avoid possums from entering your home and expelling them is to use ammonia and mothballs. Possums hated this smell and it was certainly not pleasant to suffer from the smell of such things. Pour some ammonia into an empty beer can and then put a rag to make wicks. Ignite that rag to spread the biggest smoke, throw them wherever you think it’s the ideal home of possums. You can also use mothballs, not only to help keep possums, but also to keep away insects and other pests. While the smell of ammonia and mothballs can be uncomfortable to people, try to endure because possums will surely find a way to escape from your home once they smell those smells.
#3. Trap method
Traps are the most common method of removing possums from your area. Knowing how to trap a possum is not difficult, similar to trapping rats and other rodents. You just need to find yourself a great trap and use something that smells appealing as cat, dog or fruit food as bait. Possum are omnivores so it is not difficult to find suitable bait for traps.
Currently on the market selling a variety of possum traps, you can easily buy directly at local stores or order online through e-commerce sites.
Live catch traps are the number one priority on your list because possum is not allowed to kill in some states. Traps should be about 10 x 12 x 32 inches in size so they can be confined and placed along a fence around the garden or where it may be the ideal habitat for possum.
#4. Possum repellents
If you have tried all of the above methods but still cannot remove possums from your home then try this method. This may be the most effective method to eliminate such wildlife. Possum repellents is all you need.
There are many types of possums available today that you can buy from specialized stores. Most of these substances contain urine powder of predator to deceive possum that this is enemy territory. Just shake them around the garden and possum areas, and the smell of predators will immediately impact the sensitive nose of the possum, keeping them away from your home.
Such products are mostly harmless and organic so they do not affect chemicals for humans and pets.
These substances can be easily found in hunting and outdoor stores, often in the form of powder, liquid or grain. But if you can’t find these, you can use the urine of any predator like foxes and wolves instead.
Or you can also do your own repellent to expel possums from your area. Only with castor oil and soap you can make homemade skunk repellent. All you need to do is mix castor oil and soap in a 1: 2 ratio and then pour the mixture into a spray bottle (you can add water). Freely spray the prepared solution onto areas where wildlife is traced and you should do it daily to ensure they leave the area completely.
You can also get help from your local wildlife and insect prevention team to get the most professional containment.
How to trap a possum?
As mentioned above, trapping possums is an easy task if you understand their characteristics and habits. However possum is a wild animal so you should not kill them but trap them then release them into the wild.
Below we will help you to know how to trap possums extremely simple.
Step 1: Select the trap
Possums are larger than mice so you can’t slap your mouse trap to trap possums. A possums trap should be about 12 inches high and 40 inches long.
Currently on the market there are many types of possums, you should choose a good material to avoid possums that can escape with your sharp teeth. There are basically two types of possums, one-door and two-door, each with their own pros and cons.
The 1-door type makes it easier for possums to enter the trap, protecting the bait better. This is also the type that many people prefer by the affordable price.
The 2-door type provides a higher catch rate than the 1-door type and can also set the 1 or 2 door open feature.
Regardless of the type, you should consult with previous customers to make the best choice. And choose the right size of trap so that the animal can enter.
Step 2: Locate traps
The best place with the highest trap success rate is near the possums shelter. However, you may not always be able to determine their whereabouts. So you should look for signs such as footsteps, faeces or vandalism that possum causes to be able to set traps around it.
If possums live in easily accessible areas such as storage rooms or attics, the location you place the trap in should be the center of the room because possum moves freely at night without vigilance like a mouse.
If possums live in more inaccessible places such as under floors, tree niches or dark and narrow spaces, traps should be placed around their entrances.
Make sure your trap location is always on a flat surface, so the trap can work best. You should also not set traps in areas with strong sunlight or areas of unstable conditions to avoid damaging the possum.
Step 3: Choose bait
Choosing effective bait is also an important factor determining success in trapping possums. Luckily possums are omnivores and they can eat whatever you choose. Common types of bait to trap possums are fruits, canned food, pet food and vegetables. They are not as fastidious as mice and mice so choosing a bait is a lot simpler.
All you need to do is set the bait in the right place to make sure the trap works. Never place the bait between the trigger plate and the bottom of the trap if you want the door to not close.
Step 4: Set and check
Possums are nocturnal, so make sure your trap is set before bed. That’s why you should close the trap in the morning to avoid harming other animals and children.
You should also regularly check traps to avoid possums from being locked up longer than necessary. An animal that is locked up for long will surely be very hungry and panicked if it is not released in time.
Tips you need to know when setting possum traps
The most perfect time to catch possum is before their breeding season, around the end of the annual fall.
Stabilize the possum trap with a brick or weight object, which will make it more stable when the possum enters.
You should only use a small amount of bait to attract possum, too many bait will easily be stolen and escaped. You also should not strip too much bait to form a path to possum into the trap, once they are satisfied with that amount of bait, no animal wants to risk hunting for a strange object.
When possum release in the wild, they can pretend to die, this is one of the possum’s defense mechanisms that you should know. It will work again when it is verified that the surrounding environment no longer threatens it.
Possums may be a mischievous wildlife that destroys your garden but it is also an animal that helps kill snails, beetles and insects. That’s why killing them is completely unnecessary.
If you do not want to be disturbed by them, you should use measures to remove them naturally or use lve catch traps to bring them away from your home. Do not use inhuman methods or use toxic chemicals to eliminate them.
Understanding possums will help you get rid of them more easily, but will also give you a better overview of these wildlife. Hope the information above will be useful for you and your family.