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  • USA Opossum Removal Education Guide and Resources

Opossum Repellent - What deterrent works?

Opossum Repellent - You have probably seen these products in hardware stores and garden centers, and never had to look at them a second time, but when you are having problems with your garbage sacks being ripped open or your pets regularly coming into contact with the animals, you might give them a second look. They are usually marketed with bold black and yellow or red and white containers, and might have a name such as 'Critter-B-Gone' or 'Get Out Opossum', and will often have bold claims about how quickly the Opossum will be packing their bags. The difficult aspect is judging whether or not they will be effective, but in most cases they cannot back up the promises made on the packaging, and are at best unreliable at repelling opossums.


Audio Animal Repellents

There are many different companies that make and sell these devices as a type of repellent, and in most cases they are said to be effective against all type of pests from rabbits and raccoons to skunks and feral cats. They can either be provided in repellent units that activate when they sense motion in your yard, or units that provide a permanent high pitched noise that is outside the normal range of human hearing. There is limited evidence to show these devices are genuinely effective against the wide range of animals that they are said to repel, and for the price they are sold you would want strong evidence to back up their claims.

Home Remedies Said To Drive Opossums Away

There are many different home remedies that are said to keep opossums out of a yard or garden, although most of these also have very little evidence to show that they work. Mixing a cup of molasses with two pints of water is one such home recipe, while another solution that is said to drive them away is a mixture of hot chilli peppers, garlic and water made into solution, and then these mixtures are spread on to leaves and around any hedges at the edge of your yard or garden. If you have opossums in a confined area, putting mothballs into this area is also said to drive the animals out.

A more simple method that could scare away opossums is to have a motion activated sprinkler in your yard or garden, so that if any animals come into the area, they are sprayed with water from the sprinkler.

Chemical Repellents

Chemical repellents usually work by replicating a particular scent or smell that is said to be unpleasant to the animal, and while in some cases the scent will just be unpleasant, other repellents also mimic the scent of predator urine. While these products may work in some cases, there isn't really any evidence to show that these chemicals are effective in driving opossums away either. Some of these products will include either chilli or predator urine as a part of the compound, and there may be some that claim to work just on opossums and others that claim to drive many species away including the opossum.

Why Repellents Fail To Drive Away Your Opossum Problem

Trying to prove the effectiveness of a repellent is something that is quite difficult, as there can be many different reasons why an animal doesn't return to a particular area. If an opossum has regularly been coming to your yard or garden to find food or shelter, then while they may be more cautious because of an unfamiliar sound or scent, they are usually unlikely to be completely driven away by this. A good food source or a warm and dry area to use as a den is not to be given up lightly, and most opossums will be able to overcome or avoid a particular repellent in order to gain access to that particular food source or nesting area. The result of this is that most people will find that they have to move on to other methods after trying to use an opossum repellent.

Alternative Ways To Solve An Opossum Problem

There are plenty of different measures that you can take to try and drive opossums away, and while in most cases they may require a little more work or expense than just buying a repellent and sprinkling it around, they will usually deliver much more tangible results. Examining the fence around the property and repairing any holes should help to keep out the pesky animals if they are coming in through a fence, and if the mesh in the fence is large enough to allow the opossums through, installing a layer of chicken wire on the bottom of the fence can also help. Practical measures such as putting chicken wire over the access points to cavities beneath decking and sheds are sensible measures, while removing fallen fruit, securing garbage in a container and storing pet food correctly can also help to drive the opossums away.

Go back to the main Opossum Removal page for more information about opossum repellent such as bleach, ammonia, mothballs. Can you buy something at Home Depot to repel opossum?
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