Tuesday, March 06, 2012

opossum sighting on 2nd Street NW

See this message from a 2nd Street NW resident:

Last night I saw a possum on the sidewalk outside my house. If you haven't seen one before, let me warn you, they are not handsome creatures...At.All.

With its back to me it appeared to be a large kitten or a small cat but then it turned towards me to reveal a snout-like nose and when it ran off I saw that it had a long, thin tail like a rat.

I had to run a Google search to confirm that it was in fact a possum and, yep, that's exactly what I saw.

13 comments:

  1. Also, be careful! They can be very nasty, especially if they are carrying rabies. Keep your distance!

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    1. I've always suspected that when sin entered the world, the possum soon followed. They really are mean creatures and are particularly dangerous when seen out during the day.

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  2. I also live on 2nd St. and neighbors have told me they used to see possums around frequently, though this past year they seemed to be displaced by the rat infestation. I don't know which is worse! (I'm going to say rats)

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  3. Yes, they have a face only a mother could love, but opossum are not mean (relatively speaking), and they are quite common in urban/suburban environments. Like any other animal, they wont hurt you unless you threaten them. I've seen a mother with 5-6 babies in the neighborhood in the last year, and we've had at least one regular in our back yard in Bdale and it walks around while we're on the back deck (likely one from that family). Its completely normal and not alarming and also fun for the kids. I understand that for some people who live in the city, these "large" mammals can be alarming. However, its not a bad thing to have some urban ecology.

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  4. We have had possums in the neighborhood for a long time. A large one sometimes appears overnight on my fence in the 2300 block of 1st Street. Seems healthy and harmless, and wanders off when the sun rises.

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  5. I've lived in the neighborhood for nine years and my dog and I have seen many of these and a few racoons as well. Nothing new...

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    1. Unfortunately, we had a dead raccoon in our alley last week. I'm guessing that it was poisoned, which if I'm right, I find to be disappointing and unnecessary.

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  6. Opossums are harmless, their only defense tactic is to play dead, which hurts no one. Also, they have high immune systems so the chance of them carrying rabies is very rare.

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  7. a couple of years one of these creatures got on the roof of the houses on Adams St NW and it sat on the skylight window in my bathroom. So when I went to the bathroom one evening it looked like a big face was peering in at me. I screamed and ran off thinking some perv was up there. The police said they'd had several reports like this and it was just this ole possum trying to stay warm on the skylights... haven't seen one in a while so glad (?) we have a bit of country here still. Saw a bright red cardinal bird yesterday, he was tweeting away in the top of a tree and watching me unload the car.

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  8. I agree.
    The neighborhood would be a much less wonderful place if all the urban ecology disappeared. My dogs get a huge kick out of knowing there are possible possum adventures just outside the door.
    PS. Raccoons are not possums but this gave me a much more affectionate feeling about the wild animals that live among us.
    http://video.pbs.org/video/2191769658/

    BTW, Rats are not included in that warm fuzzy feeling...and after living here 5 years, I've noticed an uptick... there was one running into the basement of the "abandoned" house at the corner of first and V the other morning. Do we need to up the ratio of alley cats?

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  9. Said creature actually lives most of the time in the alley behind the 100 blocks of W Street, even side. Some people who live in that area feed the stray cats and the creature can be seen enjoying the leftover cat food. One resident of that area owns a Dachshund who would love to kill the creature if she could get her paws on it. Her owner won't allow that due to the rabies concern.

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  10. Thank god I don't have a skylight in my bathroom.....what a mess that could be.....:)

    Also, I've noticed more rats along 2nd Street between W and V.

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  11. I don't like rats either and you can file a request for rat control with the city at http://hrla.doh.dc.gov/hrla/cwp/view,A,1384,Q,573842.asp

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