Ontario - Possum Paradise
by Brenda, Sunshine, K, Edie, Cheri, Lisa, Roberta L, Miranda, Wojtec, Ray Kirk, Ray, Jenn Munro, John, Bruce Potter
(Brighton, Cramahe Township, Oshawa, Whitby, Bowmanville, Don Mills, Toronto, Markham, Hamilton, Welland, London, Strathroy, Petrolia)
Brenda from Brighton, Ontario, wrote to say ... Last night my husband and I saw a possum feasting on left over cat food on our neighbor's deck. She had told me about an odd little animal on her deck before and her description did sound like it was a possum. I had no idea that we had them here in Ontario, so our sighting of one last night proved her story. It seemed quite at ease with the feral cats that my neighbor and I take care of. I had seen possums when visiting Australia so I knew what they look like and what the approximate sizes are. I hope it stays in our area. I'll make sure it has plenty to feed on this winter!
One of our readers said ... I saw one hit on the side of the road on my way into work this morning in Cramahe Township.
Sunshine from Oshawa wrote to say ... I was coming back from a walk with my dogs around 7 p.m. It was already dark. As I approached my house I saw something moving across my neighbour's driveway. It immediately garnered the attention of my dogs, fortunately leashed. It looked like a raccoon until I saw its shorter hairless tail. It ran towards my back fence and scaled it to enter the yard. When I released the dogs into the yard later, it was gone.
K from Oshawa wrote to tell us ... A Possum has moved into the space under our deck this winter. It has been spotted at night traversing the yard at warp speed to reach the deck then search furiously for an opening to the space under the deck. There is a compost bin across our patio from the deck, 2 bird feeders in the yard and a running creek nearby. Our yard backs onto an extensive wooded green space. Two winters ago we also had a possum in residence under the deck. There have been no hostile encounters with our cats or the dog who visits regularly. Clearly this is a desirable habitat. It hosts bunnies, chipmunks, squirrels by the score, birds and the usual pesky raccoons. We welcome Pogo, the Possum.
A reader who is close to downtown Oshawa wrote ... I took in a wild cat and her kitten last summer, they have adapted very well and are just wonderful to have around. The mother is very territorial and likes to look out all the windows to make sure no other cats are around. I lifted her up to look out the back door this morning at the crack of dawn and much to our surprise there was a Possum in our yard rummaging around. The Possum looked hungry and took the cut up apple and some peanuts I tossed its way. The cat had a very curious look but didn't mind our little visitor.
Edie wrote to say ... We live in Whitby and we have a Possum that we call Percy. Well, we don't actually "have" him, he kind of adopted us. He only comes around in November. My husband jokes that it must be when he closes up his cottage. Anyway, he LOVES the cat food I put out for a feral cat. Unfortunately, raccoons come as well and they are usually hogs and eat it all. Percy is very timid and gives the coons a wide berth but he is SO CUTE. This is the 3rd year we have seen him. He normally comes out around 10:30 p.m. and I look for him sometimes because I want to be sure he is okay. But if I open the back door to give him scraps (because apparently they like them) he runs away and won't come back until the next day! It gets SO COLD in the winter and I worry he will freeze to death. So far, so good. He looks in good shape right now and has a little fat on him. He is totally white and wiggles when he walks. He is quite large for a Possum, bigger than those in the pictures I have seen. I don't know where he lives but he doesn't cause any trouble and never gets into stuff like the raccoons do.
Cheri from Bowmanville said ... My Possum is hiding somewhere in my big backyard in Bowmanville. First
sighted last summer. Now has shown up again on our deck at night. One of our cats had thrown up his kibbles on the outside deck and it froze during these last very cold days, but last night I noticed the Possum enjoying a free frozen dinner! Gross, but the funny little critter seemed to enjoy every bite.
Lisa, from the west end of Toronto says ... I spotted this little gentle guy ratting up all the birdseed last night. I just stood there watching him ... he wasn't alarmed and just kept on happily munching!
Roberta L reported ... We live in a suburb of Toronto known as Don Mills or North York. We live quite close to a ravine and our backyard backs on to a green park with a small creek running through it. It is now the middle of December 2015 and for the last month a very big Possum has been visiting our backyard feeding under the bird feeder on whatever has fallen to the ground. We also have a female Labrador retriever named Annie who is 5 years old. I have to be very careful when I put her out in the mornings, around 5 am, as he (?) is usually there feeding. I use a flash light and shine it at him through the back screen door and then go outside without Annie to gently coax him to go back under the fence for his safety. He is quite sweet and not aggressive at all. Then I let Annie out and she goes silly running up and down the fence line sniffing for him. I look forward to seeing him. I need to have my husband take a picture of him. He (the possum) is light grey and has a mostly white face.
Miranda from Markham wrote to say ... Possum spotted on the evening of January 28th in Markham, Ontario. He/she was eating dried cat food we have out for a little stray cat we are trying to catch.
Wojtec said ... I just saw a Possum in my front yard walking toward me and as soon as it saw me it ran between the houses, then came back and walked by me and continued on its way. At first I wasn't sure what it was - it was bigger than a rat and had a white head. It was about 1:15 am. Hamilton, Ontario
Ray Kirk from Welland, Ontario, told us ... A possum was in my back yard tonight in Welland Ontario. It was trying to get some seeds out of my bird feeder. It was unsuccessful and has wandered away.
Ray from London, Ontario, said ... I have had a Possum visiting my wild animal feeding station outside my backdoor for two years now. He shows up in the Autumn, and shares the feeding station quite contentedly after dark with the Raccoons, Skunks and Jack Rabbits. Preferred food - kibble! He hangs around for about an hour each night during the Winter, and disappears in the Spring.
Jen Munro from London, Ontario, wrote to tell us ... I saw one today on a unkempt section of a construction site. The ground is very rough with lots of downed trees. This site is between the construction of a new neighbourhood and a very busy road with fast traffic. I hope it can find a safe place to live.
A reader from the north east area of London, wrote to report ... He comes out after dark eats berries that have fallen off the tree at our front door. This was in November. Can not get a picture.
John from Strathroy wrote to tell us ... Live trapped two this week in the back yard. December 11 2015. Smelly ugly animals that hiss and snap their jaws open and closed.
Bruce Potter from Petrolia said ... One came to back door tonight in Petrolia, Ontario and we almost let it in because we thought it was our cat!
Just let our dog out for his late night pee, and saw a Possum about 20 feet away, fairly chubby. Waddled away when he saw our dog who stood very still. No harm done, but I wonder what he would have done if our dog had proceeded. This was December 2015.
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