What do I do with this opossom?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by BackyardDove, Nov 18, 2015.

  1. Skeeter10

    Skeeter10 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 29, 2015
    how many chickens are left in the wild flock
     
  2. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    It’s been a lot of decades but I understand exams coming up. Still, I’d suggest it is a good time for someone to block off that hole the possum is using to get under the house. Not necessarily repair it, but block it off. You’ll have to trap or remove that possum anyway to repair it or you’ll lock him under your house. At least get that taken care of now that he is trapped and before something else moves in.

    You can maybe check with someone in animal sciences or whatever department your college has that deals with wild animals (if they do) or check with a game warden or even animal control but I believe possums are territorial in the respect that they have a certain territory they hunt. I do not believe they are territorial in that they keep other possums away, possibly with the exception that two adult males will fight if a breeding female is available. I’ve trapped possum on successive nights. Sometimes they are certainly family units but sometimes I really don’t think so. I don’t think that possum is offering you the protection against other more aggressive possums that you think. Personally I’d prefer a wild possum that is afraid of humans over one that has no fear of humans. A wild one is probably safer to be around. At least he would try to get away first before attacking.

    You’ve been offered a lot of suggestions, some more beneficial than others. In suburbia most of them are probably illegal. There may actually be no legal way to dispose of that possum, with your only legal option being to turn it loose on your property or someone else’s private property if you have the owner’s permission. That property would need to be several miles away, I’d suggest ten miles minimum, so it would not return to you. Even most ways to kill it are probably illegal where you are.

    So what can you do? Talk to animal control about your dilemma. They may take it off your hands, they may not. At least they should know your legal options and should be able to offer advice.

    Once you know what your legal options are, it’s your decision on what to do, legal or otherwise. Other than if you know someone that lives a long way away that would let you turn it loose on their property (I don’t like this option since it is so tame for many different reasons but it may be legal) or if you know someone that would like to cook that possum themselves (probably illegal but as effective and probably safer if not more so than SSS) I don’t have any other suggestions. The crew have pretty much laid out the options as far as I can see.

    It’s your decision. I won’t say it’s an easy one.
     
  3. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are approximately 10 chickens or less left. There use to be at least 30.

    Actually, I'm studying to be a Wildlife Biologist. I'm not studying in local wildlife, but I've heard those who are say that possums generally have a territory that is their own. Not sure how accurate that is since people don't usually just have one problematic possum, which implies to me that their territories overlap. We planned to replace the broken siding long ago, but we haven't done it because of the possum. It can't be blocked off, there are many areas where the siding is completely gone and we don't have the special siding we need, nor do we have enough wood to block off the many gaping holes.

    As far as I know, it is legal to kill possums and other wildlife. Maybe not through poison because others may eat the corpse. I live in the city limits, so firing a gun is illegal. However, other methods are likely to be legal. I know it's legal to relocate them though. We relocated the raccoon to our local state park since it's illegal to kill wildlife there. Not sure if that's legal, but it was the safest option for him. He had a healthy fear of humans though, so I'm not sure where I could take the possum where he, chickens, and humans can all be safe. I'll probably end up calling animal control to see where I can take him. Thank you all for your help!
     
  4. Skeeter10

    Skeeter10 Out Of The Brooder

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    Oct 29, 2015
    do u know if anyone feeds them
     
  5. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Anyone that leaves food outside for their cats or dogs or leave their garbage unprotected are feeding the wildlife. That’s why raccoons, possums, rats, coyotes, and some other wild animals thrive in urban and suburban settings. They have a ready food source and quite a bit of protection from their natural predators. People would be amazed at how well they can hide in suburbia.
     
  6. shortgrass

    shortgrass Overrun With Chickens

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    Lol I've never been able to bring myself to eat them; they look like giant rats :p

    But free protien for the birds saves on my feed bill, so whatever....

    I personally wouldn't keep a possum as a "pet" with chickens around... They're notorious egg eaters and just dirty scavenger vermin, really, IMHO...

    A dog will keep it from being too bothersome, but really, if you choose not to secure the coop at night when there is an obvious predator lurking is asking for losses.


    A door on the coop, with a latch. Keep the possum out if the trash, they open the door to all sorts of other rodents and disease, so be extra careful to keep things cleaned up and locked tight.


    Best of luck :)
     
  7. tougholdbird

    tougholdbird Out Of The Brooder

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    You can use a humane type trap and physically relocate. Or you can trap and permanently "relocate". Make no mistake, they do eat chickens!
     
  8. BackyardDove

    BackyardDove Chillin' With My Peeps

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    The chickens or the possom? Nobody feeds the chickens, they're wild. And nobody intentionally feeds the wildlife here.


    Yes, wild animals tend to thrive in towns because of the ready supply of food. However the only people around the area who might be feeding him is us, and we stopped feeding our cats at night long ago. Nobody else owns outside cats around here and I've never seen any garbage improperly disposed of around here.
    We have dogs, and have a dog who particularly loves to chase wild animals. But that dog isn't allowed into the chicken area because she chases chickens too. Besides this, this possum has no fear of dogs(doesn't run away, at least) and tends to stay up on top of things, away from the reach of dogs, rather than on the ground. As for the door on the coop, I don't have a coop. Like I said in my original post, there was no need for an expensive, enclosed coop when I first got my chickens. There is a fenced in area specially for the chickens, as well as a roost attached to the privacy fence, but there is no actual coop. I would have to completely redo that entire area to build an enclosed coop and I simply don't have time for that right now. But thank you for the advice!


    He's already been trapped, that was the whole issue, I didn't know what to do with him now that he's trapped. I've decided to relocate him, but I am still in the process of trying to find a place for him.
     
  9. shortgrass

    shortgrass Overrun With Chickens

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    Well, according to Texas law.....
    https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sou...SZEDQU&usg=AFQjCNF-EaPZo9gIzUH4AcjA6a4InZQ7XQ


    You have to have written permission from the owner if the land you want to relocate to or a permit from the state of Texas.


    Really, dispatching it is the best option. Even if you do manage to get permission or a permit, the possum will probably die a horrible death in the midst of another predators territory...
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2015
  10. tougholdbird

    tougholdbird Out Of The Brooder

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    Alot we do is under the cover of darkness. Permits etc? Fish and game cannot always come to our aid.
    If you are not going to terminate this possum, find a good place and release it....period! Do not have to say anything to anybody!
     

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