Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by DLS, Oct 29, 2008.

  1. DLS

    DLS Songster

    I seem to have a few 'possums aroung here of late. Do they (possums) eat chickens? , or do the raid the eggs- or what?

  2. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

    Feb 11, 2008
    Waterloo, Nebraska
    They have been known to kill chickens and steal eggs.
  3. lleighmay

    lleighmay Songster

    May 21, 2008
    Woodlawn, VA
    Possums are opportunists, not really predators. Sure they will eat it if they can get it but they're not really bright and they won't spend their time reconning the property to figure out how they can burglarize your facility and eat your chickens. If a chicken walks in front of them or an egg is laying around they will certainly eat it. By no means are they raccoons with superpowers and predatory interests. If your facility is secure you won't have to worry about them (and if it's not they will be the least of your worries). Of course I'm biased; I just rehabbed (and released) 8 of them earlier this spring. I currently have 3 (that I know about) that come every night to eat with my barn cats. I've never had any problem with them and (even if I did) wouldn't resort to murder but rather would rethink my security perimeter.
  4. bluey

    bluey thootp veteran

    Apr 10, 2008
    Washington, PA
    ...resort to murder...that's a funny one!

    Last I checked they're about as endangered a species as mice and rats and are a wonderful vector for disease.

    If folks choose to make them pets, that's fine but let's not forget that above all, in the wild, they are nuisance animals and are potential chicken killers. If their population is not controlled they will eat your chickens if they can't find anything else.

    I choose to exercise management of the species.

    I guess that makes me a first degree possum serial killer. [​IMG]

  5. amazondoc

    amazondoc Cracked Egghead

    Mar 31, 2008
    Lebanon, TN
    Quote:Possums don't actually carry many diseases. They are a vector for a nasty horse disease -- but a majority of horses in many areas have already been exposed to that disease (equine protozoal myeloencephalitis), so in most cases it's too late to really worry about that one anyway.

    As the earlier poster said -- if you have problems with possums, you need to rethink your perimeter defenses. If a possum can get in, then much nastier critters like raccoons and weasels can get in as well.
  6. eggchel

    eggchel Crowing Premium Member

    Dec 26, 2006
    Both Coasts
    Quote:Re-thinking one's security perimeter is, of course, the first and best approach to protecting one's livestock, however,
    it is inappropriate, in the Predators and Pests section, to refer to killing a predator as "murder".

    The definition of murder is:
    The unlawful killing of one human by another.

    Using that terminology to describe the disposal of a predator appears to be intentionally inflammatory especially considering that the O.P. did not even mention killing.

    From the stickied "Read First" topic in the Predators section: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?pid=42102#p42102
    *Although some ways are not considered ideal to some, it serves the purpose of removing the offending predator. If you have an idea or a helpful comment, please do reply. If it is a sarcastic comment about the disposal or capture of a predator, please keep your thoughts to yourself. We are not here to judge one another on methods or ways and means.​
  7. whitecra

    whitecra Songster

    Mar 12, 2008
    I had on this last weekend that got in my silkie pen. He got hold of one of my silkie hens that was sitting. It looked like she had exploded in the dog house where she had her eggs. She was fine and was with the rest of the flock. Now her eggs were all broke and was eatten. Now the next night he was back. He was small so he could get in the pen where a bigger one couldn't get it. He was after more eggs I am sure and a chicken if he could get it. My husband killed it.

  8. Pumpkinpup

    Pumpkinpup Poultry Princess 10 Years

    Jul 16, 2008
    North-West Georgia
    They are a threat to your flock and I would not underestimate their ability to take every opportunity to get a chick, egg or even an adult bird if possible. I would be sure the coop was secure and that there were no possibilty of them sneaking in for a midnight snack [​IMG]
  9. Tuffoldhen

    Tuffoldhen Flock Mistress

    Jan 30, 2007
    They are a threat. O'possums will eat chickens, chicks or eggs.

  10. MagsC

    MagsC Queen Of Clueless

    Jul 27, 2008
    Yes they will harm chicken and eggs.
    As said, they are opportunistic. We had one that was eating newborn kittens.

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