The Oppossum


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Welcome to The Opossum

What am I?

I am a successful scavenger, thanks to my adaptability and excellent immune system. Of my 100+ opossum species friends in the world, our most common and  recognizable in the United States are the Virginia opossum. 

  • Our Scientific Name of the Virginia Opossum: Didelphis virginiana
  • Our  Average Size: 21-36" long (including tail); 4-15 lbs. 
  • Our Average Lifespan in the Wild: 1-2 years 
  • Identifying Our Features: cat-sized body; grey fur with a white face; long pointy snout; round dark eyes and hairless ears; four paws; long, hairless tail spanning over 1/3 of its total body length. 
  • Activity: We are nocturnal - active mainly after dark. Although we do not hibernate, we are often less active during the winter. We tend to be solitary animals and live alone when we are not breeding. 
  • Reproduction: Between the months of January and October, we breed and give birth to up to two litters of 4-8 young each. The gestation period is about 13 days, after which time the young are born and must immediately claim one of 13 nipples inside the mother's pouch. The young remain inside the pouch for about 50 days, after which time they begin to exit the pouch and spend time on their mother's back. After about 100 days, the young opossums split from their mothers to find their own home ranges.
  • Skills: We are skilled climbers, thanks to our opposable rear thumbs and long tails that are designed to wrap around branches. We are also great swimmers, although we prefer to travel on land.
     

Where do we like to live?

We inhabit Central America and the eastern half of the United States, as well as parts of the west coast, where we had just been introduced during the Great Depression.  While we prefer deciduous woodlands with nearby sources of water - like streams or swamps - we are extremely adaptable and succeed in a variety of habitats and climates. The most important elements in our home range are food, water and shelter. We don't build our own dens; therefore we often take shelter in abandoned animal burrows, hollow logs, brush piles, woodpiles, attics and other man-made structures. 

Can we live in your attic? Please!

Diseases that we can transmit, and they include coccidiosis, Toxoplasmosis and salmonella  When we are infected, leptospirosis can be transmitted to humans as well as animals through their feces and urine. We like to defecate randomly leaving you without a clue of our droppings. I guess I now know why we can't live with you. Topper's Wildlife Removal offers dead animal removal in Dallas/Ft Worth area as well as opossum trapping in Dallas/Ft Worth area.  


How Interesting!

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