Possums are neither the smartest nor the prettiest of mammals, but that doesn’t mean that they don’t deserve kindness and respect. That being said, opossums are pretty large, and can cause real damage to your attic. And, of course, they do carry diseases, like almost all nuisance wildlife. If you’re sure the animal you’re dealing with is indeed an opossum, the next natural step would be to determine if it has cubs, and if so, how many.
Getting rid of opossums humanely: In order to properly remove opossums from your attic, you will need to purchase a big steel cage trap. Then, place the cage on the ground, making sure it’s stable. You need to place it in a spot you know the opossum frequents, and place some bait inside. It doesn’t really matter what type of bait, as opossums are omnivorous, but some sort of meat is a pretty safe bet. This can attract other wildlife or pets, so if this is a concern, you can use marshmallows or a lure scent. If the babies are not mobile yet, they’re living in their mother’s pouch. If the babies have started moving around and following their mother, you will need to figure out how many cubs you’re dealing with, and use different smaller cage traps for them. Be sure to check the traps frequently, and set them up somewhere in the shade – the animals don’t need to suffer more than they already are. Opossums are strong, and will be aggressive in such a circumstance, so you need to be extra careful when handling the cages. In the process of relocation, you should pay attention to how you transport the animals in order to avoid staining of your vehicle. The relocation destination needs to be a place with enough resources for the possums to have a chance at survival, and it needs to be able to support new additions to the already existing wildlife without raising the risk of disease outbreaks due to overcrowding.
Trapping opossums yourself may be illegal in your region, as can be relocation if you’re not a wildlife rehabber or a wildlife remover. Additionally, for obvious reasons, it can be a very dangerous activity. When having to take care of an opossum situation in your attic, you can also give one-way exclusion doors a chance, but without relocating the animal won’t go far away, and it will shortly end up either back in your attic or under your house, or just move one house down the street. In other words, not quite a solution.
Once the opossum infestation is taken care of, like with all invasive wildlife cases, proper home repairs and decontamination are necessary. And your best ally in keeping other opossums from seeking food and shelter on your property is, obviously, by denying them access to food and shelter. With no possible entry points, and with no readily available food sources, possums won’t have any reasons to target your property.
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