About Opossums

Especially in the United States, most homeowners have encountered at least once an opossum in their back yard. The opossums live an average of 2 years, and their average size is 21-36'' long. This cute little animal has a cat sized body and a grey fur. It also has a long, pointy snout and round dark eyes.

What Does ‘'Playing Possum'' Mean?

When an opossum feels threatened, it has the ability of mimicking a dead or an injured animal. It can actually look dead, with its bared teeth and actual saliva foams around the mouth. Because it takes several hours for the opossum to regain consciousness, it is highly advisable keep it in a safe space from where the opossum can escape when it recovers.

Opossum's Habitat

These little animals mostly prefer woodlands areas that have a large source of water nearby. However, they are amazingly adaptable and can stay whenever they can find food, shelter, and water. Opossums do not build their dens and are in fact staying in hollow logs, woodpiles, and attics. This is the reason why you might have an unexpected guest in your house at some point.


Opossums are actually scavengers and eat dead animals and plants. However, you may found them hunt for small animals as well. Among their most favorite meals are chicks, frogs, insects, eggs fruits, and berries. One they are close to human habitat, they tend to eat everything they can find in the garbage.

General Behavior

These animals are mainly solitary and nocturnal. They live on their own apart from the reproduction season which is between January and October. Opossums can breed for up to 4 – 8 young ones. During the first 50 days of their birth, the young ones remain inside the pouch. After 100 days the young opossums leave their house. It may seem small and cute when they are threatened the opossums show their teeth to scare off the predator. If this doesn't work, then they return to the playing possum state.

Opossums are generally skilled climbers, and they are perfectly capable to wrap around branches. They are also great in water and can swim perfectly even though it is not their natural location.

Fun Opossum Facts

  • The opossums have an extremely low body temperature and an amazing immune system.
  • In cold temperatures opossums tend to lose their tales from frostbites.
  • The Virginia opossums have 50 teeth.
  • Opossums exist on Earth until the extinction of dinosaurs.

Opossums are considered to be cute, little animals that tend to use very close to humans. If you observe some continuous damage into your garbage or you find any holes in your fence, it is very likely that you have some opossum visitors. There are many ways to scare them off and take them out of your premises, without having to kill them. Consult with a specialist in order to find the best course of action according to your specific needs.

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