Should you remove possums from your yard?

Answered by Tom Adger

As an expert in wildlife management, I highly recommend removing opossums from your yard if they have taken up residence there. While opossums are generally harmless creatures, they can carry and transmit several diseases that can pose a risk to humans and pets.

One of the diseases commonly associated with opossums is tularemia. This bacterial infection can be transmitted through direct contact with opossums or through exposure to their droppings, urine, or contaminated water sources. Tularemia can cause symptoms such as fever, headache, muscle aches, and swollen lymph nodes. In severe cases, it can lead to pneumonia or even death if left untreated.

Leptospirosis is another disease that opossums can carry. It is caused by bacteria found in opossum urine and can be transmitted to humans and animals through contact with contaminated soil, water, or food. Leptospirosis can cause flu-like symptoms, including fever, chills, muscle aches, and vomiting. In severe cases, it can lead to liver and kidney damage.

Tuberculosis is yet another disease that opossums can carry. While it is rare, opossums have been known to carry the bacteria that cause tuberculosis, which can be transmitted through respiratory droplets or contaminated food or water. Tuberculosis primarily affects the lungs but can also affect other parts of the body. It can cause symptoms such as persistent cough, chest pain, fatigue, and weight loss.

Apart from these specific diseases, opossums can also carry parasites such as fleas, ticks, and lice, which can further transmit diseases or cause discomfort for both humans and pets.

To protect yourself, your family, and your pets from these potential health risks, it is important to remove opossums from your yard as soon as possible. This can be done by contacting a professional wildlife removal service, who will have the knowledge and experience to safely trap and relocate the opossums without causing harm to them or yourself.

In addition to the health risks, opossums can also cause damage to your property. They may dig up gardens, tear through trash cans, and create nests in attics or crawl spaces. Their presence can also attract other wildlife, such as rats or raccoons, which can further exacerbate the problem.

It is advisable to remove opossums from your yard due to the potential health risks they pose. Professional wildlife removal services can ensure the safe and humane removal of opossums from your property, protecting both your health and the well-being of these creatures.