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visiting opossum... what do? We dont want to kill it.

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by asteria01, Oct 21, 2015.

  1. asteria01

    asteria01 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Is there a way to deter an opossume permananently without killing it? This opossum has killed out chickens before and we have since predator proofed our coop. HOWEVER, it still likes to visit from time to time.. we installed a movement sensing light around our coop area. the other day our light blinked on at around midnight and we saw the oppossum about 5 feet from our coop... staring at our chickens. it didnt proceed any further but it fumbled around in our yard for a bit, and we finally scared it off with a water spray. since the light blinked on we assume that it felt unsafe because of the light and proceed further, but the fact that it still comes back bothers me. can we trap the opossum and maybe release it elsewhere? any other solutions? we are not going to kill it, even though it is a pest, it is only doing what it does to survive. Thanks!
     
  2. Ol Grey Mare

    Ol Grey Mare One egg shy of a full carton. ..... Premium Member

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    Please don't trap and release - it generally has a very bad outcome for the animal *and* is simply making your problem a problem for someone else if/when it wanders to the next person's property where you dump it out. So, eliminating it yourself is off the table and, hopefully, so is relocating it.........so......
    Do you have any outdoor pets (besides the birds) that you feed? Have you looked at your property from an opossum point of view to see what attractants may be present that draw it back in? Obviously the birds are one, but there are sometimes other things we have done to make our property attractive without realizing it. Where is the coop located - open area or with cover around it? Is your feed inside the coop, inside the run or? Do the birds scatter feed/scratch, etc and/or are you feeding food scraps that are not getting entirely cleaned up that day? Is there cover around that makes a good habitat for the opossum?
    How is your coop secured? Does it have an anti-dig skirting? What is the wire that you have used to enclose it? Sometimes a predator will stake out a property for an extended period, waiting for an opportunity - *IF* your coop is truly absolutely secure and there is NO food items outside of the secured area that the opossum can feed on it may move on of it's own accord.
     
  3. asteria01

    asteria01 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    okay i see. trap and release is off the table then.

    For the most part we dont keep anything edible outside where the opossum can reach it. if anything it would just be our fruit tree... but that is only seasonal. oh and our neighbors tree that drops acorns into our yard.. Our coop/run is fully covered on all sides with bricks around it on cement and the food is in the run. Our chickens free range in the day and sometimes we scatter some treats out for them, but they always finish it quickly. we have some japanese boxwood hedges around the sides of our yard, but i know the opossum doesnt go there, too thick and dense. we are using hardware cloth as wiring.

    Before we got chickens we have already seen the opossum as it travels on the neighborhood fencing, and ever so often it passes by.
    but it stays longer now because we have chickens and it has tasted a few of our unfortunate chicks before. just wondering if it will forever always be a threat now and if it will ever give up, even if we dont give it any chances.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2015
  4. Trefoil

    Trefoil Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Your best bet is to make your coop and run predator proof and then not worry about it. The possum will still come around but will give up on any serious attempt at your chickens once it realizes it can look but not touch.
     
  5. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Good luck with your problem, I would try either electric fencing or completely predator proof your coop, which you should anyway. Good luck, nice job taking an approach that doesn't kill the predator and keeps your chooks safe.
     
  6. jimbob86

    jimbob86 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Stop being so squeamish, and do the necessary.
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2015
  7. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    It isn't always neccassary to kill. You can deter, prevent, and stop first. I am not squeamish, but I do care about the environment, killing only when neccassary or for food, etc. it isn't right to say we are simply avoiding taking action, I protect my birds, but in my own way that I feel is right for all the animals, chickens and chicken predators included. If you don't have something constructive or kind to add, please don't post at all, you aren't helping the OP at all.
     
    1 person likes this.
  8. Toddrick

    Toddrick Chillin' With My Peeps

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    ^ Agree. It's a common oppossum. They are roadkill all over the place. They are ugly things too with nasty sharp teeth. It's basically a giant rat.

    That said, I have zero concerns about relocation, and if I trapped one I'd prefer to relocate. If it becomes food for another animal, great; if it dies of starvation, so be it.
     
  9. LeafBlade12345

    LeafBlade12345 Chillin' With My Peeps

    I'm sure that is what everyone said about animals like the Tasmanian wolf, which are now extinct. And if you are going to kill, at least do it humanely, though I have mixed feelings about relocation. I have studied some of the animals I relocated, not large mammals, and have had very high survival rates, and I think I'd rather starve and feed a hungry animal than die and go to waste. Please keep in mind that the OP is not asking for your opinion on whether or not she/he should kill, but wants CONSTRUCTIVE ideas on how to keep her animals safe without killing if it is possible. Many people do it, I have, and for some it just doesn't work out. To each his own.
     
  10. Trefoil

    Trefoil Chillin' With My Peeps

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    That `possum (that can easily be excluded from your coop & pens) is beneficial to have around. It eats mice & rats.
     

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