Due to land clearing and removal of natural hollow trees and logs, these nocturnal marsupials are being forced into urban areas. Possums often consider the dark sheltered areas of roofs a suitable nesting site and can be heard moving as they leave the roof after dark and return before dawn. Some people find possum inhabitation a nuisance.
Preventing Possum Inhabitation
We recommend the following measures to help if you have possum problems.
- Provide a nesting box in your backyard as an alternative sleeping place for your possums (see our possum boxes page).
- Locate and block access and exit points with suitable building materials when you are sure all possums are out of the roof. This must be done at night when the possums have left. You can also make a one way flap to allow possums to leave the roof, but prevents them returning.
- Remove possums access to the roof by lopping any overhanging branches.
- Do not feed any possums as this will attract more to your area.
- Remember that any removal of a possum will only be a temporary solution as another one will move in soon after. The only permanent solution is to block up the entry/exit points to your roof as detailed above.
If you are unable to block entry to your roof:
- Scatter camphorblocks or napthalene flakes inside the roof (do not mix these as they may cause a chemical reaction.) Possums do not like the smell.
- Place a light in the roof cavity for at least three consecutive nights to discourage the possums - being nocturnal. Possums prefer dark areas to sleep in.
- Do not use Ratsak or other baits as they are cruel. If consumed the animal experiences a painful, lingering death. Please use other deterrents as mentioned above.
You should be aware that due to protection of these animals, you are not permitted to kill, maim, or trap and relocate these animals without a permit to do so (as per the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act
). It is illegal and cruel to ""dump"" them in another area where they will have little chance of survival. These animals are highly territorial. If a possum is removed another one will move in soon after.
Should you wish to engage a professional animal controller, please use a reputable person sanctioned by the Department of Sustainability and Environment
), call 03 9296 4400 for more details.
For further information contact the South Oakleigh Wildlife Shelter on 0411 00 591