Opossums—also called possums—are rodent-like marsupials that are found throughout the eastern half of the United States. These scavengers will raid your garbage cans and even take up residence inside your attic or walls. Here are three ways to keep these smelly creatures from moving in.
Get rid of debris on your property
Debris on your property provides a hiding place for insects like beetles and ants, as well as larger pests like mice or moles. This is a problem because the pests that are attracted to your debris are some of the preferred foods of opossums. If your debris lures insects to your yard, opossums may soon move in to take advantage of the buffet. They may enter your home so that they're in close proximity to their easy food source.
To keep opossums from coming onto your property, get rid of any debris that could harbor insects or rodents. This may include wood piles, old tires, leaf litter, or any other clutter.
Practice exclusion methods
To make sure opossums stay outdoors where they belong, you need to make it impossible for them to enter your home. Opossums can fit through holes that are much smaller than their bodies—they're the size of house cats and can squeeze through a hole that's three inches wide—so you'll need to carefully seal up any suitable openings.
Check the exterior of your home for possible entry points like rotting wood or gaps in the boards. Rotten wood needs to be replaced, while gaps in the boards can be sealed with materials like expanding foam. Holes can also be blocked with ¼-inch wire mesh; make sure to attach the mesh well so that the opossums can't pull it off.
Use opossum repellants
To keep opossums from wanting to move in, use repellants. Opossums don't like the smell of mothballs, so they can be placed in enclosed areas that would otherwise be a good hiding place for opossums. Mothballs can be placed in your attic, crawlspace or in other opossum-friendly parts of your home.
You can also use predator urine (specifically coyote urine) to scare away opossums. Predator urine can be purchased from places like garden centers or hunting stores. The urine makes the opossums think a scary predator is living nearby, which makes them want to live elsewhere. Sprinkle the urine around the perimeter of your yard and home to keep opossums at bay.
For more information, contact a pest control company in your area.