Vigilant homeowners are constantly inspecting their property for unwanted animals and signs of intrusions but the biggest threats may be nocturnal. Opossums are nocturnal creatures that are a common nuisance species in the Chicago area. They can be attracted onto a property by garbage or pet food and they commonly make their homes in attics, basements, sheds, or decks. It is important for homeowners to recognize signs of an opossum intrusion because the opossums themselves are only seen at night.
Opossum Life Cycle
Opossums are marsupials that carry their young in pouches and they are the only marsupials found in North America. They can be identified by their pointed snouts, grayish black fur, and rat-like tails and they can grow to be between 10 and 14 pounds. The height of their mating time is in January and their young spend the first part of their lives in their mother’s pouch. The young opossums eventually come out of the pouch to cling to their mother’s back until they are ready to leave on their own. The average lifespan for an opossum is between 2 to 3 years.
Opossums are omnivores that search for food at night and they will eat just about anything. They have been known to steal pet food and rummage through garbage cans but their preference is meat or carcasses. Opossums are also nomadic but tend to make a home base for themselves in man-made structures such as under decks, porches, and sheds and they can even intrude attics and basements. They become a major problem when they get between walls because they can cause property damage and create foul odors with their droppings or by dying in a hard to reach place. Opossums do not usually carry rabies but they do carry fleas and parasites and spread disease through their droppings.
Opossums are also a threat to attack pets and their 50 sharp teeth make for a pretty vicious attack. They are slow creatures and in some cases when they feel threatened, they will play dead to ward off predators.
As soon as you suspect you may have a opossum infestation, call us immediately at 847-464-1861 for removal. We are trained professionals and equipped to deal with opossum exclusion and removal, using humane live animal trapping (never poisons!). We will remove the opossum and fix any property damage they may have caused. Click to read more about opossum removal services from Attic Solutions.