Do you know that opossums are the only marsupials that live in North America? Yes, they are the brothers of kangaroos. Despite their lovely appearance, possums are really dangerous for your house. That’s why you need to think about how to trap possum once you just noticed it in the yard.
Most people mistakenly believe that they are easy to remove, as possums are not insects: these animals are relatively big in size so you will have no problem spotting them in time. Moreover, possums do not reproduce so quickly as insects. Nevertheless, they are not harmless.
Opossums can adapt to different environments very fast, and all that stealing from the rubbish bin and digging in the yard can cause you lots of troubles! Therefore, today, I want to discuss how to get possums out of the house.
- Survey your property for damage.
- Find the Nest.
- Set a Possum Trap. Buy gloves before using the trap. Be sure to check the trap at least once a day, or preferably twice.
- Put a Possum Bait in the Trap.
- Move the possum to its natural environment.
Detailed Guide and FAQ on Catching Possums
Why do you need to get yourself opossum traps? How to define whether you have an opossum in the yard? What are the potential dangers the animal can create? In this section, I will answer these and more questions.
Before we start, I want to give you one useful advice: try to read section by section, do not skip them as I wrote quite a short informative guide and put only the necessary information in it. Let’s start!
Surprisingly, a lot of people do not know how opossums look, as such, they cannot identify when their home yard is infected by this animal. If you are among those people, after a couple of minutes, you will close this gap.
Color: the color varies from grey and yellow-brown to black. Most often, one opossum has several colors.
Body size and shape: possums are small marsupials. Their body size varies from 7 to 50 centimeters without a tail, with it — from 11 to 105 centimeters. The muzzle is elongated and pointed. The whole body is covered with short hair.
What they eat: as I have mentioned above, opossums can adapt to different environments very fast. One of the reasons is their ability to eat various foods, including insects, crops, etc. Opossums are omnivores.
Behavior: opossums are most active at night. Most of all they are known for pretending to be dead. There is even such an expression: “playing possum.” Such a skill often saves their life. At some point, the animal may fall motionlessly, while the eyes become glassy, and foam out of the mouth.
Moreover, the smell emanating from the possum will not be very pleasant as well, indicating that the animal is dead. However, this is nothing more than a game.
Potential Possums Dangers
Opossums are nocturnal animals that prefer to sleep in the afternoon. Therefore, they are not so dangerous for your children or home pets. In addition, possums are aloof and docile. Usually, they avoid confrontations and do not bite people.
However, sometimes they can behave differently, the animal becomes aggressive and may bite painfully. This happens when something or someone threatens their life. Apart from that, possums can damage your building structures pretty badly.
It is impossible to get rabies from possums since they have a very low body temperature, which is unsuitable for the virus. However, possums carry other infections (tuberculosis, toxoplasmosis, tularemia, etc.)
What Do Possums Like to Eat
Opossums are omnivores, meaning that they can eat whatever they find. These animals have a unique digestive system that can digest all organics and find beneficial substances in them. The possum diet includes insects, worms, and various carrion.
In addition, possums eat fruits and vegetables. By the way, if you notice a possum in your yard, do not worry about the orchard and your fruit harvest, these animals eat only rotten food.
Some possums may even eat snakes. In order to survive, their body has learned to withstand even the poison of snakes. However, this does not apply to all possums, but only to some species.
How to Trap Possum (Step-By-Step Guide)
At this point, you already know what possums look like, whether they are dangerous, and what these animals prefer for dinner. Now, it is time to know how to trap a possum in your yard. Read very carefully, follow the steps below, and you can do it easy and fast.
Step 1: Survey your property for damage
First of all, you need to find the damages left by the possum. This information will be in handy when the time for you to create a possum trap bait comes. Knowing the animal’s path, you can move on to the second step.
Step 2: Find the Nest
Although the most favorite living place for possums is open fields or open areas near the stream, they can also live in brush piles, tree crevices, or areas beneath steps. I recommend you to check these places to find the nest.
Step 3: Set a Possum Trap
There are different approaches to trap an opossum. As the best way to catch a possum, I always recommend setting a trap. You can try to do it by yourself or to ask for help from an expert. Usually, the trap measures about 20 inches, and you should place it along the animal’s path. That is why in the first step I asked you to find the damages.
Step 4: Put a Possum Bait in the Trap
How to attract possums to your trap? For this, you should put some food inside the trapping box. It can be fish, vegetables, or fruits.
Step 5: Possum Trapping
There are specialized boxes that were designed for trapping possums. These are traps that automatically close as soon as the possum enters them.
What to Do With a Trapped Possum
Now you know how to catch a possum in your house, but what should you do after that? I will say right away that killing an animal is an extreme measure. In addition, in most states, the possession of possums is prohibited. What you should do is to relocate them to a natural environment. But before that, make sure that you have not caught a mother opossum.
Also, do not forget about the trap. It should be safe for the animal. Make sure to check it at least once a day, but it’s better to do it twice. And it is recommended for you to buy the gloves prior to using the trap as the opossums can spread diseases.
Quick FAQ Section
Here, I selected four of the most popular questions about possums and their trapping. As in the previous section, I have already covered the most questions in detail; here, I provide you with short answers.
How to Set a Possum Trap?
First of all, you should buy a steel cage and put it in the place where the opossum appears frequently. Attract them by preparing possum trap food. As possums are omnivores, any type of food will work.
How to Catch a Possum Without a Trap?
There are two other possible ways to trap a possum. The first one is to use various chemicals: possum repellents, sprinkler systems, etc. The second method is the fencing.
How Smart Are Possums?
One of the reasons why the government is caring for possums is that they are quite smart animals. In addition to the ability to play the dead, they also have a sharp memory. Especially, if it is related to the food.
What Size Should Be a Possum Trap?
It all depends on the possum size. The average length is about 20 inches, but it can be 10 and 35 inches too.
Top 3 Best Possums Traps
If you are looking for the possum traps, then this section is for you. Based on my experience, I selected three of the best opossum traps. So, keep on reading.
1. Havahart 1045 Two-Door Humane Possum Trap — TOP Pick
- Material: Alloy Steel
- Special Features: Maximum resistance to rust and corrosion
- Item Weight: 12.8 Pounds
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 36 x 10 x 12 inches
- Target Species: Groundhog, Armadillo, Cat, Raccoon, Opossum
Havahart company is one of the leading manufacturers of animal traps. Besides this, they also produce and sell electronic and animal repellents. There are several animals on which the company is focused. Among them are chipmunks, groundhogs, raccoons, squirrels, rabbits, etc.
On the company’s official site, you can find a convenient browsing mechanism that allows you to filter the products by animals.
This large trap suits for large opossums, as it has quite a big dimensions: 32x10x12 (all in inches). The cage is made of steel, and it is actually resistant to corrosion or rust. In addition, the trap by Havahart is completely safe for possums as the trigger rod is located outside.
2. OxGord Live Animal Trap — Designed for Large Possums
- Material: Metal
- Color: Silver
- Item Weight: 8 Pounds
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 12 x 12 x 32 inches
- Target Species: Chipmunk, Gopher, Cat, Beaver, Raccoon, Chicken, Opossum, Skunk, Mole
The OxGord Live Animal Trap has even more dimensions than the previous one. But before we move on, I want to tell you several words about the company and the brand. OxGord is quite a popular company but it does not specialize in animal controls like Havahart does. This brand produces many other products, such as vehicle covers, shock absorbers, and so on.
Despite such a wide specialization, all products are surprisingly high-quality and last for a long time. This animal trap is not an exception. Made from high-quality steel, it is resistant to rust and completely safe for opossums. The trap has smooth internal edges that cannot damage the animal.
As I have already mentioned above, the trap is slightly bigger than the previous one: the dimensions are 32x12x12 (in inches).
3. HomGarden Live Animal Cage Trap — Can Be Used to Trap Other Animals
- Material: Alloy Steel
- Style: 32″ w/Iron Door
- Item Weight: 9.3 Pounds
- Item Dimensions LxWxH: 32 x 12.5 x 12 inches
- Target Species: Groundhog, Armadillo, Rat, Rabbit, Chipmunk, Weasel, Gopher, Cat, Raccoon, Chicken, Vole, Opossum, Skunk, Mole
HomGaren sells various products for gardens, fitness, and home, including animal traps. Similar to the traps described above, it is made from high-quality steel that is resistant to rust and corrosion.
This cage can be used not only for possums but also for other animals, including squirrels, moles, chicken, skunks, and so on. It has sensitive triggers that provide a quick door closing without damaging the animal.
The cage can also be used for large animals that you want to relocate, not kill. By the way, do not forget to buy a big napkin that you should put on the cage when the animal is trapped and always wear gloves!
I hope that my article will be useful for you and you will successfully get rid of possums!Remember that they are quite smart animals and can adapt to various environmental conditions. In the comments box, I want you to tell me about your opossum’s experience. What did you do?
Did you kill the animal or relocate it? Where did the possum live? Leave your answers below.
- Opossum (Suny College of Environmental Science and Forestry):
- Caring for possums (Northern Territory Government):
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