I came home and found this little girl trying to find some shelter in our garage. Kinda weird since it’s so late in the year and she’s so small, but she definitely came to the right place. Lucille (Lucy) is our newest rescued addition. She’s a little freaked out right now, but she’s very sweet and I know with enough handling she’ll be very friendly.
I did some research on these little guys and opossum are actually super fucking interesting and downright rad.
Opossum are marsupials and actually aren’t related to rats despite their rat like tails (which they use for balance and grasping branches) and appearance. They’re actually more closely related to kangaroos and koala bears since opossum have pouches for their young. But opossum are the only marsupial in North America.
These little dudes have been around since before us! They can be traced back 70 million years ago with the dinosaurs! Besides the fact they’re not super good at defending themselves, they must be doing something right to be around for so long.
Despite their bad reputation, Opossum are actually very clean and are resistant to most diseases, including rabies. In fact, if a rattlesnake or some other poisonous snake bit them, they would be resistant to it with only a little swelling, but no death.
These little badass’s have over 50 teeth! That’s more than any land mammal in North America. Along with its teeth, it also even has opposable thumbs on its hind feet for tree and branch grasping.
Opossum have earned the nickname of “Natures Little Sanitation Engineer” due to the fact of how helpful they are in local areas by eating pests and rodents along with a lot of insects like cockroaches, crickets, and beetles.
In a world where animals are traditionally viewed as commodities like food or clothing, it can be easy to forget that they are individuals like us. They have specific wants and needs, likes and dislikes. They desire to live lives of happiness and freedom just as much as we do, and we owe them that.