Opossum on your attic. A situation that might seem simple to handle, but very easily can turn into a large trouble. There is a reason why most articles recommend hiring an expert or notifying the Animal control to handle the animal removal.
If you spot an opossum on your attic in the late spring or early summer, you should be particularly cautious with trapping and removing it on your own. In that time of year, an opossum that has inhabited your attic is most likely the one holding babies in her pouch. In this time of the year, opossums bring their youngsters to the world, and very likely up to 13 of them could be living in your attic.
But, how to trap and remove an opossum family? Sadly, most people, not knowing enough about opossum breeding cycle, trap only the mom. After they remove the female, they are soon baffled with the discovery of more than 10 youngsters days later. Worse, sometimes, if not spotted for a longer time, babies might die in the homemaker’s attic, making it extremely difficult for a homeowner to clean off remaining smell and disinfect the area. So, what is the solution to such a complicated issue?
Expert opossum removal
The best thing you can do is have an expert remove an opossum from your home. It can be Animal control unit or an animal removal company. One way or another, the best solution is to avoid doing it on your own. There are risks of using the wrong bait and trapping a wrong animal. Also, you risk putting an animal through torture or even killing it if you use a wrong kind of trap or place it improperly.
Baiting and trapping
If expert help is not available or you can't afford it, you will have no choice but handling the opossum by yourself.
A proper opossum trapping starts with choosing a right bait. To avoid trapping a wrong animal, choose to lure an animal with marshmallows, pieces of bread or cinnamon. These baits should attract mostly opossum, without posing a threat to other species.
Setting up a proper trap, in this case, means choosing a large cage trap and placing it in a shaded area. Cage trap should be placed far away from any electric wires or water, as well as sun exposure. Make sure to check out your trap regularly, to make sure that the wrong animal hasn't been caught and, if any animal has been caught, is not suffering in the cage for a long time.
Opossums have a mechanism to protect them from predators. They own a quality of the simulating state of death, and into such details, that they will even release fluids out of their body cavities as well as unpleasant grass. If an opossum that got caught in your trap appears dead, wait for 5 hours to see if it wakes up before you get to relocate it.
Next, if you are clearing out your attic of opossum during the summer or late spring, make sure to count on babies being present. To catch all the opossums on your attic, you will need to add about 10-15 additional small cage traps with baits. You will need extra bits to make sure to catch all the opossum babies, even if they manage to steal the bait before the trap is activated.
Overall, the process of catching a family of opossums usually takes a longer time than catching only 1 opossum. During the summer, unless you manage to see if the adult opossum has a pouch or not, you will need to count on an entire family being there.
After you've successfully caught an opossum or a family of opossums, you will need to find a proper way of removing them from your home. If you are not in the situation where you can turn trapped animal (s) to an expert to remove them properly, you will be left with doing it yourself.
Your final decision regarding the faith of trapped opossums is to simply do what is legal in your place of living. In some countries, killing opossums is forbidden, somewhere you are not allowed to release them back in the forest. In some states, you are left with making a decision entirely on your own.
The best option would be to relocate the animal. The second best option would be to turn the animal in to experts, who will act according to the state's law. In case that you are left with no options but to put the animal down by yourself, make sure to do it quickly and mercifully.
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