1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Possum

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by heyeddah, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. heyeddah

    heyeddah Chillin' With My Peeps

    280
    0
    129
    Sep 15, 2008
    Milford Ct
    Ok So the other night I am in the garage splitting wood and cleaning up. I see garbage all over the floor, so I tip the trash can up to throw out the stuff on the floor and my hand is whipped by an Opossum tail. SCREEEEEEEAM as loud as I could. My Dh came running and all I could do was point and scream.
    We put the lid on the can and left it there overnight. The next day we relocated our garbage sucking, chicken threatening overgrown rat.
    What was he doing in there in the middle of the day? I think he was half frozen to death too, because he did not move at all. This is the same possum my son and I chased through the back yard with a rake.
     
  2. sred98

    sred98 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 18, 2008
    Oklahoma
    LOL! He didn't move because he was "Playing Possum" [​IMG] You probably scared him half to death! LOL! But, he knows where the food is, so I doubt he will stay away. You may have to be a little harsher with him next time, you know?

    Sorry he scared you so bad. They can be pretty vicious when cornered. Be careful.

    Shelly
     
  3. jforsness

    jforsness Chillin' With My Peeps

    194
    0
    109
    Dec 28, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    My pups were freaking one night and there was a possum in the backyard. Scared to crap outta me, turns out they're fairly harmless. More snarl than bite, but soooooo creepy![​IMG]
     
  4. ginbart

    ginbart Overrun With Chickens

    Mar 9, 2008
    Bloomsburg, PA
    Did you know Possums have 50 teeth?
     
  5. sandspoultry

    sandspoultry Everybody loves a Turkey

    2,121
    15
    211
    Feb 10, 2008
    Eastern NC
    We had been having trouble with 'possums on and off all winter. There is a drainage ditch that runs thru our property and seems to be a varmit super highway. There was an old den not to far from one of our chicken pens so I set a trap and baited it. in the course of the next 4 or 5 weeks I trapped 12 'possums in it. At first it was one every other day then less and less, now it's been there over a week and nothing. Maybe that is how many live in a given area. [​IMG]

    Steve in NC
     
  6. ssteiner

    ssteiner Chillin' With My Peeps

    128
    0
    119
    Nov 24, 2008
    Orange, CA
    I live in the suburbs, so most of these predators I read about on this forum aren't a problem for my girls, but we have a family of possums living in the fruit trees of a neighbor. Every night, particularly during the summer, just like clockwork, I see them running along the top of a 7 foot cinderblock wall at the rear of my property line. They've never given us trouble, but I worry about my girls nonetheless. Our setup has an fully enclosed run attached to a small coop. Every night I go out and close up the door that leads from the run to the coop, because I worry a possum will somehow get into the run and then climb into the coop and kill my girls. But how aggressive are possums as predators. Do they actively seek out prey vis a vis a raccoon or fox or hawk, or are they more opportunistic, killing that which presents itself to be killed. I'm wondering how worried I should be. Thanks for any tips.

    Scott
     
  7. Cetawin

    Cetawin Chicken Beader

    13,752
    56
    333
    Mar 20, 2008
    NW Kentucky
    He/she was probably cold and hungry and found your garbage...but the play possum...i.e. dead. They are too funny when they do that.
     
  8. rooster-red

    rooster-red Here comes the Rooster

    7,008
    18
    261
    Jun 10, 2007
    Douglasville GA
    Quote:They are very opportunistic, will eat the easiest meal they can find, and bluff when threatened.

    They are not well suited for aggressive hunting like coons and other predators.

    If you have a predator proof coop you have very little to worry about from possums.

    Possums will forage in the day time if they have young to feed, they don't get rabies.

    It is true that they have 50 teeth.
     
  9. only one lay

    only one lay Chillin' With My Peeps

    234
    0
    119
    Nov 2, 2008
    litchfield mi
    Live on a dead end rd that is the last st on our no sign/light town. When we first moved in we let the dogs go in the back yard to bring stuff in.worked into the night. next thing we know my 12 lb terrier comes dragging one in the back door all balled up. as he claimed his new yard with proper authority we have not had one near the house again.
     
  10. scooter147

    scooter147 Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,042
    59
    221
    Jul 30, 2008
    Missouri
    Scott you are doing the correct thing by locking them up at night, if you have possums you probably have raccoons.
    A possum is more of opportunist than a "hunter" but presented with a coop full of sleeping chickens he will do damage.
    Last summer I stepped out for a minute and heard my chickens raising cane, I looked over at the run and saw a possum actively going after the chickens. Fortunately possums are quite slow and the chickens were able to avoid those nasty teeth until I was able to come to the rescue. Since it was hot the windows to the house were closed so I had no idea how long she had been attempting to catch one of my hens. I suspect like another poster said that she had young to feed so she was searching for food during the day.
    I love animals but possums and english starlings disgust me for some reason
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by