Opossums - Problems They Cause, Methods of Removal and Prevention: Is your garbage always spilled over when you wake up in the morning? Do you notice large droppings and a strange smell in and around your home? Does your pet food disappear on a regular basis, and it's not your pets eating it? You may just have an opossum living nearby. But aside from the problems underlined above, which we'll discuss more about next, what are other damages an opossum can cause to your home or property?
Problems opossums cause
Like most wildlife, opossums will usually not want to live in and around your home unless they have good reason to. And the reasons are usually rearing babies, having free, unhindered access to food, or simply finding a comfy place in which they don't feel threatened. This means they'll find openings in either your home's foundation, under your porch or in your attic, and will move in there. This is the main issue with opossums – them taking residence in or around your house. However, this is usually when the bigger problems start. The first main issue is sanitary in nature. They leave behind lots of rather large droppings that can spread a number of diseases. This is especially important to combat if you have pets or small children who might come into contact with these droppings.
The second problem arises depending on where the animal has settled. They are avid climbers, and will take advantage of tree branches leaning too close to your home to get into your attic. There they may cause significant damage and leave quite a mess if they go undetected for long periods of time. From the droppings which will be concentrated in your attic, to their bad smell due to their lack of hygiene, it can be quite a bad experience to find your attic invaded by opossums, never mind the fact that they can displace shingles and cause quite a stir in case they become restless or are scared by your pets or other wildlife.
The third issue with opossums is they are huge foodies, and they'll eat just about anything. So, if you have any kind of food up for grabs laying around on a regular basis, and you live in a suburb, you may expect at least frequent visits from these creatures. They usually go for your pet's food if it is left outside or in easily accessible places. But they're also fond of garbage if they have access to it. Food is also the main reason they decide to stick around – so having a constant, reliable food source coupled with a safe place to call home is basically an invitation for opossums to come and live near you.
Methods of removal and prevention
The main thing you will have to tackle here is availability of anything that might constitute food for the animal. And you should always start with securing your garbage bins. Not only place weights on the lids, but actually secure them with either locks or lock mechanisms which can keep the lids down securely. Your best bet would be to actually keep the trash cans inside a shed or a small room in your house or garage, just to make sure there's no chance that an opossum or other opportunistically feeding wildlife has access to them.
As for your options when it comes to getting rid of moved in opossums, you'll have to wait for nighttime for them to get out and then secure the area. You can also use one-way doors to prevent them from coming back if you found their hiding spot and it's viable to secure it. If they're moved into your attic, then you don't have many options aside from calling a wildlife removal expert to help you out. They'll securely remove the animal without causing it any harm, and then relocate it to a safe place where it can thrive, and not want to come back and bother you again.
Do not, under any circumstance, place traps to catch the opossums yourself. While this may seem to be the easy thing to do, there are a lot of states which prohibit opossum traps of any kind near residential areas. Furthermore, the animal is traumatized by the experience and can even suffer significant injury unnecessarily. Always rely on the help or guidance of an expert wildlife removal service when dealing with opossums and their removal – opossum removal is a specialty service. In some instances, a rather aggressive dog can also keep these creatures at bay, but there's always the risk any of the animals might get hurt if they decide to battle it out.
Keep in mind that wildlife removal services can help a lot when dealing with opossums. And they're completely safe for both you and the animal, and reliable in that they also help you deal with the reasons behind the opossum moving in the first place. If the animal did some damage to your property, they'll also help with fixing that and making sure all prevention measures have been taken to avoid a future infestation.
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