Pest Status:


Didelphis Virginiana


Their identifiable characteristics include elongated heads, pink noses, serrated teeth, and black eyes.


21 to 36 inches long and resemble a small cat


They also have hairless tails, leathery ears, and defined big whiskers. The marsupials have opposable thumbs on their hind feet

The opossum is the largest type of marsupial in N. America. They are common in most backyards, although it’s easy to spot them in basements or attics of homes. Here’s everything you need to know about these pests.

Facts, Identification, and Control

Opossums are not rodents, but marsupials. Below are some common opossum facts and characteristics.

Facts about Opossum

Opossums are medium-sized animals. Wondering about possums vs. opossums? They’re the same.

Where Do They Live?

The marsupials live in North America. Their habitat is mostly forested areas close to rivers, streams, or marshes. Opossums also love populated areas like private backyard or farms. Over 60 different types of possums are available all over the world.

What Do They Eat?

Possums consume amphibians, reptiles, berries, eggs, and other vegetation.

How Do I get Opossum?

You may get opossums if your compound or backyard has uncovered compost heaps or overflowing trash cans. Moist areas or a pond may attract the marsupials.

How Serious Are Opossum Problems?

Possums can cause problems like:

Damage to the Property

Possums can decide to forage and nest near residential and commercial places. They may cause damage to the roof gutters and siding.

Transmit diseases

Opossums can transfer disease to pets and people like tularemia, tuberculosis, fever, and other conditions. Opossum rabies is also common.

Health and Sanitary Issues

Possums cause sanitary problems as they spread their droppings, which could pose serious health risks.

What Can I Do About Opossum?

Homeowners need to store trash in sealed containers in a locked place. Any pet food dish should be brought inside to avoid attracting opossum. Fruits and fallen berries can also attract possums; you need to remove these sources from your property.
Check your home for access points and holes, and trim any hanging tree branches, as these marsupials are skilled leapers and climbers.

Signs of an Opossum Infestation

You may have an opossum infestation if you notice signs like:

Damage to the Property Exterior

Torn up shingles on the rooftop may indicate opossum damage as the marsupials enter a building by climbing.

Unpleasant Odor

Opossums have large droppings like those of a cat. When soaked into building materials and insulation, the droppings have an unpleasant smell.

Scratching Noise

Possums make ripping and scuttling noises that sound similar to noises made by mice or rats.

Opossum Prevention and Control Tips

Below are some tips on opossum control:

Get Rid of Anything that Attracts Them

Remove anything like debris, trimmed branches, or stack of leaves. Close any dark places like stores, sheds, and garages.

Remove all Access Points

Walk around your house and repair any hole or crack that connects to the exterior. Check for broken doors, windows, and deck lattices. Use metal flashing and mesh to cover possible entry points.

Opossum Professional Pest Control

It’s critical to get in touch with a licensed pest control professional if you suspect an opossum infestation in your home. An experienced company will conduct an inspection and come up with the right treatment plan.
More information about opossum


Are opossums good to have around?

Opossums can be beneficial for your garden. They are a benefit to ecosystems and a healthy environment beyond eradicating ticks. They will catch and eat cockroaches, rats and mice. They also eat snails, slugs, insects and sometimes even small rodents. They’ll even clean up spilled garbage and fruit that has fallen off trees.

Are opossums dangerous to humans?

Opossums are not generally aggressive or vicious but have been known to attack humans. Opossums will fight back if they have to defend themselves and will attack to protect their young. Opossums may also carry diseases such as leptospirosis, tuberculosis, relapsing fever, tularemia, spotted fever, toxoplasmosis, coccidiosis, trichomoniasis, and Chagas disease. They may also be infested with fleas, ticks, mites, and lice. Although opossums are prone to carry parasites and diseases associated with rotten food, the risk of contracting rabies from them critters is low.

What is the difference between a possum and an opossum?

Opossums and possums are different animals. Opossums live in North America, while possums live in Australia and other countries.