Known best for 'playing dead', North America's only marsupial is one of the more common pests people may find. While they aren't much to look at, these pests can be a boon to humans do to their non-confrontational nature, tick based diets, and, their inability to contract or carry rabies.
Common problems with opossums:
Living in the attic or crawl spaces
Knocking over trashcans
Bothering/Riling up pets
Stealing outdoor pet food
When it comes to food, opossums will eat anything that they can fit in their mouths. They prefer to scavenge rather than actively hunting. They will most commonly go after pet food that has been left outside and trashcans or dumpsters that have been left open. If easily accessible, opossums will also go after eggs in chicken coops. However, the majority of their diets consist of insects, most notably, ticks. Every season, an opossum eats an average of 5,000 ticks. Opossums help prevent the spread of tick borne diseases to humans and pets. On top of that, opossums continue to help humans by eating snakes. Opossums are immune to most snake venom which makes them able to eat venomous snakes.
While opossums are normally nomadic and will only briefly pass through yards, they will sometimes decide to make shelter near/in human spaces. These places are usually attics, walls, chimneys, under decks, or, in abandoned sheds. They typically look for places that have nearby sources of food and water. When opossums make shelter, it is most often a female with babies rather than lone males.
Opossum Removal and Prevention
When it comes to opossum removal, it's best to leave it to the professionals. When cornered, opossums can lash out in fear, causing injury and possibly transmitting diseases. While they are not aggressive animals, they will still attempt to protect themselves if they feel that they are in extreme danger. Sometimes raccoons need to be removed manually, which can be dangerous without the proper training or protection.
Another possible problem is when baby opossums are left behind. Opossums have large litters of babies that can easily fall off their mother's back. If the babies are not removed and the mother cannot retrieve them, the babies can suffer and die, leading to terrible sounds and smells. If the nest was in a wall, it can cost hundreds, sometimes even thousands to cut open the wall and remove the babies. It's best to have a qualified professional handle it from the beginning.
The best way to get rid of opossums is to prevent them from being attracted to your home in the first place. Ensure that the lids to trashcans and compost bins are securely shut and locked. Do not leave pet food out overnight. Remove possible nesting locations such as dead trees, unkempt brush/firewood piles, and run down sheds. Visually inspect the roof line of your home for any obvious damage or holes.
If you notice any damage/holes or suspect opossums may have made their way into your home, don't hesitate to contact us. We can help determine what the problem is and offer a free estimate and/or inspection.
Don't wait! Get in touch with us today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Can I buy a repellent or a sound emitter to drive them off?
A: No! While there are a number of chemical or urine based repellent on the market, they are only effective in specific circumstances and when used by professionals. Noise deterrents, or sonic sound emitters, also will not work. These devices are a scam. If animals are not bothered by the sounds of cars or people, they won't be bothered by sound emitters.
Q: Can't I just do it myself/have my handyman do it?
A: It's not advised. Wildlife can pose many dangers. Without proper protective gear, wild animals can attack and injure people or transfer diseases via fecal matter or bites/scratches. When trapping or exclusion are done improperly, it can lead to many problems down the road, such as animals being trapped inside walls/attic, other animals taking up residence, and, even worse damage to your home, which can lead to expensive bills down the road.
We take pride in every job we do. That's why we have a Lifetime Guarantee on all our repairs. Wildlife won't be able to get past our repairs, and if they somehow do, we will come back and make things right, for free. Don't put yourself or your family in danger. Leave wildlife removal to the professionals.