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Opossums

Opossums are the only North American marsupial.

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large gray and white opossum in a tree

Opossums are nocturnal omnivores. They are most commonly found in underground dens. They have a unique ability to 'play possum' when threatened. They will appear to be dead, when in fact they are not and can sometimes stay that way for up to 4 hours!

Damages Landscapes

Damages Structures

Difficult to Eradicate

Hazard to Health

Nuisance Pest

Spreads Illness

Structure Invading

Opossums are a year round concern in New Jersey.

Opossum Identification

Opossums are the only North American marsupial; and, as such, they carry their young in a pouch. Adult opossums are about the size of an average house cat, they are about 15-20 inches in length (not including their rat-like tail), and can weigh between 4 and 14 pounds.  Opossums have a long pointed face, hairless ears, and are whitish-gray in color.  They have a dense undercoat, along with long sparse guard hairs. Opossums are known for hanging upside down by their hairless, pink tails from tree branches. 

Opossums are nocturnal omnivores and will feed on a large variety of items including fruit, grass, grains, fish, and insects.  Opossums sometimes build their burrows in already existing structures that are close to food sources.  They can also be found living in hollow logs and trees; in garages and sheds; under piles of wood, brush, and other debris; and under homes and other buildings.  Opossums favorite home, however, are underground dens.  They will burrow under gardens, lawns, homes, garages, decks, sheds, stone walls, woodpiles, and even sidewalks to create a cozy home.  This burrowing not only causes damage, but has actually been known to collapse structures completely. 

Dangers Associated With Opossums

Opossums may become aggressive if they feel threatened by you or the family pet. They will bite or scratch and may carry and transmit disease.

Prevention of Opossums

The best way to prevent problems with opossums on your property is to make sure that they do not have easy access to food sources.  Be sure that outdoor trash cans have tight fitting or locking lids on them and that they are stored a distance away from the outside of your home.  Pick up uneaten pet food every evening.  It is also a good idea to place garden and compost areas away from the outside of your home.

In order to prevent opossums from using your home to nest in, repair any openings or holes that they could use as an access point.  Make sure that vent covers are secure, and that any openings in or around your home’s foundation are repaired. 

Treatment For Removing Opossums 

Removing opossums from your home and property should only be done by a trained expert. Opossums are wild animals, and if they are cornered or feel threatened, they may bite or scratch. 

At ChemTec Pest Control we can get rid of opossums through our animal control services; our professionals have the experience and equipment needed to safely and humanely trap and remove opossums from your property and stop them from further damaging your lawn, gardens, and home. 

If opossums have become a problem in your home or on your property, contact ChemTec today for more details about our animal control services.

Additional Opossum Articles

Preventing Wildlife Problems In New Jersey


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