Living With Opossums
Florida's only marsupial (a mammal of the order Marsupialia having a pouch containing the mammary glands and serving as a receptacle for the young) is the Virginia opossum (Didelphis virginiana). Opossums are about the size of a house cat, have long naked tails and small ears. Opossums occur throughout the state in virtually all habitats. If threatened they may go limp and appear dead, hence "playing possum". Opossums are common in residential and suburban areas, and are most active at night.

Opossums are attracted to virtually any type of available food, including garbage, pet food, or cultivated fruits and vegetables. To prevent attraction of opossums garbage cans should be secured with rubber straps, and pet food should be taken in at night.

A landowner may lawfully live-trap nuisance opossums using sardines or cat food as effective bait. It is unlawful to transport nuisance opossums, other than for the purpose of euthanasia. Relocating wildlife is seldom biologically sound, the animal often does not survive.

You can receive technical assistance for opossum problems by contacting the FWC regional office nearest you.