The Opossum Trilogy

A while back I began to notice that my barn cat Waffles seemed to be eating more than usual. He is a hard working cat that takes his job seriously. He gets a quality diet and regular petting. I was pretty sure his appetite didn’t suddenly increase; I suspected a nocturnal barn visitor.

I have had the issue before. every few years, an opossum ( or possum) seems to find it’s way into the stable and enjoy sharing Science Diet with the cat. They are relatively harmless critters, eating mice and ticks and not much of a risk for rabies. But they do harbor a parasite that is dangerous in horses. So, possums in the horse barn have to be evicted.

One night I set a trap. The next morning, I had managed to trap Waffles. You would think he would learn as it was not his first time. The next night, I set it again. And, voila, in the morning I had a possum. I took him for a ride to a nice wooded area and let him go. He trotted off as I waved goodbye.

Well , the food consumption did not seem to go down. I started to wonder if I had another marsupial present. When bringing the horses in one night, there it was, in the corner of the stall. Not to miss the opportunity, I got the trap, Opened it and convinced the creature it needed to walk in from his/her corner. This time it was a late night ride to a different wooded area and this guy ran out of the trap.

Fast forward another week or so and Waffles’ food continued to disappear. One night I am in the feed room and Waffles is acting a bit odd, walking to a corner filled with buckets and other stuff. I take a close look and, yep, there is another possum. This time I called my friend Gary, known as the master opossum wrangler, and he arrived with heavy gloves and like any super hero, took control of the situation and caught the critter and took him for a ride to yet another wooded area.

It’s been a few weeks now. I feed Waffles only in the morning to avoid attracting wildlife. There’s been no sign of a fourth possum around. So, for now, I think I can safely say the barn is possum free.