This article will detail how you can control and repel Opossums from the yard around the home. In general, the best way to control a nesting animal will involve a trap. To repel a foraging animal active around garbage or digging in the yard, one of our sound repellers will do the job. Details on both are below.
OPOSSUM BIOLOGY ^
Opossum are another nocturnal animal which may live in the country, the city or the suburbs. They, too, love to get into garbage and gardens. Leftover dog or cat food on your deck is a sure way to find out if any are close to your building. Opossum may live in burrows, attics, or crawl spaces. Sheds and garages are other nest sites. Their burrows are larger in diameter than a chipmunks’ but do not have as many tunnels. Expect to find one large hole which leads to a den. Many times they will take advantage of naturally created holes around patio’s, wood piles and sheds. These burrows may cause structural and water problems if they exist alongside foundations. In addition to burrows, opossum can climb onto any attic. Like raccoons, they will destroy insulation and leave their excrement. This will lead to strong odors. Here is a short video showing an opossum caught in a live trap.
OPOSSUMS TEARING UP GARBAGE OR CHEWING THINGS AROUND THE HOUSE ^
Opossum will readily tear into garbage, dig up mulch piles or chew on yard furniture and decorations. The reasons are many but this behavior is mostly attributed to them seeking food. You can try animal proofing your garbage pails, but this may be hard to do. Opossum are smart and will find many ways to gain access to areas they suspect has some good food. Furthermore, many paints and finishes contain high concentrations of minerals or nutrients which attract these animals. Furniture and other yard items become the target of this gnawing and though generally never consumed, the damage done is both annoying and expensive.
To keep them away from any given area, get one of our sound repellers and set them to “motion detection” keeping the “audible sound” level to 40-60. You’ll need to The next time any opossum or other animal tries to mess with your garbage, it will go off and scare them away. One or two encounters with the sound is generally all it takes to keep them away for good and the “wireless remote” control we include will allow you to turn the unit off when you need to enter the protected area.
This machine uses ultra sound by default to chase small animals but for opossum, you’ll want to use the “audible” sound. This sound you control which can be dialed up as high as 100 db (or totally off). The sound released is combination of prey birds and sirens that will scare opossum instantly when activated.
Refer to our product page for complete device details since it has many options. Here is a quick summary of why this unit is a good option and well suited for certain animals like opossum.
- It has an “audible” sound most any alpha animal does not like so they avoid it.
- It has a wireless remote control so you can turn it off/on as needed from afar.
- It has a day time only, night time only or 24 hour a day setting so you can have it active when needed. For opossum, it should be turned to operate during at night.
- It has the optional motion activated setting you’ll want to use so it only goes on when needed.
- It includes an AC power supply so if you can run it by plugging it into a power outlet.
- It can also be powered by batteries which can last several months.
Our sound repeller can be used to keep opossum out of the yard. Plan on using one machine per 4,000 sq/ft of area. And since it will only impact animals in front of the device, you need to make sure you have a clear unobstructed view of the area you want to protect when setting up the machine. This usually means keeping it 1-2 feet off the ground.
Units should be placed 1-2 feet above ground and pointed in the direction where animals are entering as well as “over” the turf you want to protect.
For easy installation, MOUNTING BLOCKS are handy. They can accept 1 or 2 repellers (picture to the right) and have a 1/2″ hole on their bottom so they will easily fit over a 1/2″ piece of rebar or any other wood or plastic stake. Ultra Sound Repellers will work fine by themselves as long as you have a good place to set them up. But we highly recommend getting the Units with Mounting Blocks in the kits we offer. Mounting Blocks allow you to place units anywhere and they will save time too.
We also feature several accessories for our sound repeller including POWER CORD EXTENDERS (33 FEET AND 66 FEET), CIGARETTE LIGHTER POWER ADAPTER, ALLIGATOR CLIP POWER CORD and AC POWER SUPPLY REPLACEMENTS.
OPOSSUM DIGGING UP LAWN ^
Opossum will dig up sod, turf mulch piles, pine straw, wood chips and just about any ground cover you have in the yard seeking food. Remember, food to them includes insects. One of their favorite foods are grubs. If you don’t treat your yard for grubs annually you are sure to get insects reproducing and nesting in plants and soil. Both raccoons and opossum have great noses and will smell any population of insects which is living and breeding in or around your yard. Once they smell insect activity, they will begin to dig up turf, pull back sod and overturn mulch. They are seeking grubs, crickets, ants, millipedes, grass hoppers, slugs, termites, boxelder bugs, bees, yellowjackets, earwigs, roaches, pillbugs and just about anything which may be living in or around your yard. To stop this from happening, one of the more direct approaches is to spray with MAXXTHOR EC.
This fast working insecticide will kill grub larvae AND act as a repellent to any digging animal. The active will serve as an irritant to animals that dig up dirt bothering their smell and taste senses.
Add 2.5 oz of Maxxthor to our 20 GALLON HOSE END SPRAYER and fill the sprayer to 5-10 gallon line. This can be used over 5,000 sq/ft of turf to control anything the opossum might be targeting.
The Hose End is easy to use, be sure to watch our online video by clicking here for a full explanation on how it works.
OPOSSUM LIVING UNDER HOUSE ^
Opossum will regularly move into attics, crawl spaces or other parts of the home seeking shelter. They will learn to climb up down spouts, cedar siding and other types of home construction leading to them into attics and other voids of the structure. There are many reasons why you should stop them from doing this. Animals living in such areas are a hazard due to disease, the destruction they do to the structure and the chewing which can occur on electric wiring of the home. Furthermore, they have a bad odor which will invade living areas rapidly.
Though you can use some of our Liquid 4-The-Birds to keep them from traveling up and down your structure, if you suspect you have them living in some part of the home you will need to do some trapping. This is probably the best thing to do if you think they are living adjacent to the home as well since animals living under decks or in sheds will ultimately reproduce. Their offspring are very likely to find their way inside as they grow. Evidence suggests opossum which have taken up residence inside homes are that much more likely to do so again as well as their young if given the chance. Trapping and either destroying the animal or relocating it may be the only option to get rid of them once and for all.
One thing is for sure: DON’T SEAL OFF ANY ENTRANCE HOLE UNTIL YOU KNOW YOU HAVE TRAPPED OUT ALL ANIMALS USING THAT SPACE. If you try sealing holes without first removing the residing animal you are only asking for trouble. You may trap the animal or it’s young inside which would make a very angry and dangerous adult. Animals trapped inside holes which are sealed will do whatever it takes to escape many times exiting into living areas. Parents will go to any length to get to their young which can make them both aggressive and destructive. Furthermore, any animal which is sealed out will only chew their way back inside since this is their home; they know no better. If you know some opossum are residing somewhere in or around your home and you need to trap them out, we have several trapping options which are all proven and effective.
BEST OPOSSUM LIVE TRAP ^
For most any opossum, our LT111230 will work fine. It is long enough to catch opossum, easy to set and they are easy to catch with the right bait.
Trap placement only needs to be done alongside the path they’re using or where they are active. This could be at the base of a tree it is climbing, on the roof, against the foundation wall, under a deck, on a deck, in a crawl space, in the middle of the yard where they’re digging, alongside a or even in the attic.
Use either our LOGANBERRY PASTE, SALMON FISH PASTE or GRUB BAIT as lure.
Loganberry works well if you have found your targeted animal feeding on fruit, vegetables or other plants.
Salmon Paste is the preferred lure if you don’t know what they want or if you have seen them feeding on meat or fish.
Of course, if the animal has been digging up your yard in search of grubs, get some of our GRUB BAIT. Opossum love it. And once trapped, you can destroy or relocate the animal at least 10 miles away.
OPOSSUM ODOR CONTROL ^
Opossum active or living in or around the home will bring with them nasty odors which may invade living areas. These odors can pose a health hazard as well as remain persistent for long periods of time. Don’t waste your time using ordinary household cleansers to remove or mask these odors. Get one of our specialty odor neutralizers to get break down the odor once and for all. Since most odors are alive to some degree, they require specific compounds to break them down or kill them off. These compounds are very effective when applied directly to the where the animals are active. This can be in attics, crawl spaces or under decks. It can also be in a wall, a chimney or a soffit. Or it can be around the home in the yard or even in a hole in the ground. We have many formulations to deal with specific odors. Try to match up your problem with the appropriate material needed. All products can be applied over each other and many times this will be needed to get complete control of any one problem.
If you have had the animal nest or die in or around the home, the opossum odor will be strong and can last for several weeks to months. Fortunately there are products which work by “eating” the odor. Though effective when applied close to where the odor is originating, you’ll get even faster results if the location of activity is treated directly. The best agent for this task is N7C .
CONTACT US ^
Give us a call if you need further help. Our toll free is 1-800-877-7290 and we’re open Monday through Thursday, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM. On Friday, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM and on Saturday, 9:00 AM to 2:00 PM (Eastern Standard Time).
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A young possum opens the kitchen door and comes in to eat cat food. As the weather gets colder, he is looking for a warm place to den – my house.
I really want to kill this animal. Live trapping is silly and repellant products are both not very effective and have to be continually renewed.
What can I use to kill the critter? (I don’t plan to cook him.)
Tech Support says
There are a few “kill” options available. The first includes the use of a live trap.
This would be one the easiest and safest to deploy considering you have a cat (or cats).
For this method, you’ll need to place a live trap inside the home in front of the pet door which you first set to “open” for the evening. You’ll want to anchor the trap with something heavy and make sure there is enough space between it and the doorway so the entrance door of the trap can close properly. Next, bait the back of the trap with some of the cat food this opossum likes and leave it be overnight. Upon entering your home, the opossum will get caught and once trapped, you can dispose of the animal in any manner you find suitable.
You could also “trap and kill” the opossum using one of the trap configurations listed above. The first option would be to set up the “window mount stand” and a #220 body grip kill trap. Again, the set would be made at the pet door since this is where you know the animal is entering. We have a video on the window mount trap stand page which shows how to set it up which is fairly easy. Just be sure to keep the cats safely behind a closed door when this trap is out since this setup would easily kill them if they try to pass through the door. The advantage of this trap over the live trap is that once the opossum enters your home, it will be killed.
You could also choose to use a similar kill trap just outside the pet door. This set up would allow you to close the pet door for the evening so the cats can’t enter. Now just outside the pet door you’ll set up a bucket guard trap with some cat food as lure. No doubt the opossum will find this offering too good to pass up and when it tries to get the pet food inside, it will meet an instant death.
Lastly, you could can poison it. This will take several feedings and several days but it can be done using some Liquid Poison and cat food. You’ll need to mix up one pouch of the poison with 1/2 cup of cat food pet set. This could be placed just inside or just outside the pet door every evening for as many nights as is needed to get results. No doubt the opossum will easily find the offering when it comes around and after a few days of eating this “tainted” mixture, it will succumb to the active and cease to exist. Just be sure your cats don’t eat it!
Here are links to these items in our cart. Please show your support for our business by purchasing the items we recommend from the links provided. Remember, this is the only way we can stay around and be here to answer your questions and keep this valuable web site up and running. Thanks for your business!
LT 11x12x30: https://bugspray.com/traps/cage/live-trap-11-x-12-x-30
Window Stand: https://bugspray.com/traps/conibear/stand-window-mount
Bucket Guard: https://bugspray.com/traps/conibear/bucket-guard-220
Bodygrip 220: https://bugspray.com/traps/conibear/body-grip-220-7-x-7