Every once in a while, pests and weed invade our living spaces, and it’s necessary to get rid of them not only efficiently, but also safely. Possums are an example of rodents that even though non-aggressive, are a health hazard. They can introduce a variety of diseases such as Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis.
What you need to know about Possums
On average, opossums can give birth to ten pups. But unlike racoons, possums are solitary, and chances of a full-scale invasion from them are nonexistent.
They also don’t make their own nests but rather, occupy ready nests and burrows – they are lazy lads. If there are no possible living spaces for them in your home, they will feel unwelcome, and will not stay for long – probably!
And even though they have short legs and rather long tail, possums are good climbers and food thieves. They will scale any tree but have trouble with metal meshes.
Opossums are omnivorous and will feed on fruits, insects, sweet corn and carrion. They can invade your food storage spaces, eat the cattle’s food and make a big mess of it which may attract other pests’ invasion.
Organic farming is growing popular by the minute. As a result, it is not unusual to find a compost heap. There’s nothing wrong with having your heap, but make sure not to throw meat, fats, oils and eggs into it as it can potentially attract possums and other scavengers.
Why Get Rid of Possums?
Apart from proving a health hazard, possums can make our living spaces inhospitable. There are complaints of awful smells in places where the pests show up. You see, possums can imitate dead possums and produce the smell of a dead rodent, making you sick in the process.
Possums make a mess of the garbage and even steal pet food. They chew on wooden surfaces as they find their way around your humble abode as they search for foods. Possums love everybody’s cooking!
Furthermore, none of your guests would continue to regard your home hospitable on sighting a few possums cross the yard. They are what we would refer to as eyesores.
The ideal way to remove these pests is by first understanding their habits. Typically, possums make their home beneath the steps, decks, bushes and under the rocks. They are nocturnal, and you may not even see them. You will, however, note their presence.
The overturned pet food cans, damaged crops, messes around the garbage cans, pathways and mucks will pretty much tell you that you have an uninvited guest in the form of possums in your home.
Home Remedies to Rid your Home of Possums
- Cleanliness: possums will make residence in places where they are sure of a continuous supply of food. They are ardent food hunters and will not stay in places they are likely to starve.Keep your compound clean by collecting all garbage, dead leaves, and throw them in garbage cans. Remember to clean the barbeque grill and collect all food leftovers in your yard. Keep the pet food covered and clean the cans after use. Ideally, don’t leave the food and water overnight as the rodents can find and feast on them.Trim the bushes into the size and cut the long branches, especially those that may provide easy entry to the roof. Any unused wood should be in safer raised places where the possums cannot use them as shelter.
- Use Deterrents: you can keep possums off your home by employing several methods that can prove effective. For example, interlaced and electric fencing can keep the pests off your vegetable garden or lawn.You can use mothball in all those places that you suspect possums may be living or using to enter your home. Possums hate the smell of mothballs and would not go anywhere near them.Ammonia is another great possum deterrent. It is quite obnoxious to the little guys and will avoid it like the plague. Specifically, place ammonia in places you suspect as entry points for opossums, and you may effectively evict them.Since possums are night crawlers, you may need to think in that direction. The rodents love nice and warm places to live and avoid damp places at all costs. As a result, sprinklers may do the trick, and your possum problem may be no more.Dog and cat hair, sprinkled around the property may serve to fool possums that there are other predators around, and thus avoid the area. You can easily collect dog and cat hair as you brush it off and put it in a sack.
- Kill Traps: you can also use kill-traps if you feel the possum problem is too much to bear. It may be the least humane method of removing possums, but it may be preferable to the health risks the rodents pose.And if you decide to use traps, remember always to clean them thoroughly and use different methods to mask the smell, effectively. Opossums have a very good sense of smell.
- Humane Traps: some of us wish no harm to animals and prefer humane methods of getting rid of the pest problem. You can use humane traps to catch opossums and release them a good distance away from your property. The pests are easy to catch since they are not afraid of traps.
- Shooting: some of us are ardent hunters and shooting the possums may seem like an attractive prospect, though radical. As mentioned, opossums are not communal like rabbits, and you may only find one or two invading your property, not a bunch. In such a case, fencing the property may be more expensive.However, you will need to be sure that your state has no hunting ban in place. It would not make any sense getting into trouble on account of a few opossums.To hunt the intruding rodents, you will need a powerful flashlight to use on the pests. Essentially, shinning the powerful rays on a nocturnal animal throw them on a stance, freezing for a moment. You can then make your shot.