What to do if an opossum is Not Scared of People, Acting Strange or is Aggressive?
If you thought opossums, or possums, are dangerous and disease-ridden creatures that love to make your life harder by making loud noises, raiding your trash at night, and terrorizing your pets and farm animals, then you’re just like the majority of people who thought wrongly.
Contrary to popular belief, opossums are gentle creatures who will commonly “play dead” out of intense fear. They also help wildlife creatures by slowing down the spread of diseases brought on by other wildlife. However, like any other creature, there are points to remember to keep you safe when near one, so it’s time to know the difference between normal opossum behavior and strange behavior and what to do in these cases.
What is normal opossum behavior?
Although they’re nocturnal animals, it’s also normal to see them out and about during the daytime. This doesn’t mean that they’re sick or ill, a perfectly healthy opossum can roam around in daytime looking for food and shelter. Upon closer inspection, opossums have a defense mechanism or a bluff to intimidate others. Hissing, drooling, and baring their teeth are all normal nervous behavior for an opossum, and they will even bite if pushed or cornered. There is a great concern that this behavior shows that opossums carry rabies, but this is rarely the case. Opossums almost never carry rabies because the rabies virus rarely survives in an opossum’s body due to its very low body temperature.
What do I do if an opossum isn’t scared of people, or they’re acting strangely?
Now that you know normal opossum behavior, you can spot what strange behavior is. While it’s true that opossums will bite when pushed, they will never chase or attack you, your children, or your pets. They will always try to get away as soon as possible, and will often do anything to escape. However, there are cases where opossums act aggressively towards humans or exhibit weird behavior, and there are two main reasons why they might be acting strangely.
Injury and Sickness.
Some opossums act strangely because they might be injured. They feed on roadkill and it’s not uncommon that they get hit by cars. Strange behavior can also be due to them being ill. In both cases, it’s best not to go near them and call your local wildlife control number.
When opossums are fed quite often, they lose their fear of humans. This will make them act very aggressively towards people when not fed as much as they are used. Once you feed opossums, more will flock your place and you will experience numerous opossums who are not afraid to be aggressive to humans in order to gain food. A lot of opossums in a small area can also lead to opossum cannibalism and aggression. Overall, it’s best not to feed them so you won’t be faced with a bigger problem.
These two reasons are usually the culprit in weird opossum behavior. Either way, when you know an opossum is acting strangely, it’s best to leave it alone and call your local wildlife control company.