I am pleased to say that I have finally done it! I have managed to find and capture those who were tormenting my family over the last year. When I had them in my power they tried everything they could to escape, yet I would not allow it… and I am glad that they have been dealt with.
For at least the last year (maybe longer) I have been plagued by at least one creature that has found it’s way into my home. I have determined that it has used a now redundant chimney at the back of my house to make a home in my laundry walls. Almost nightly it would make horrible scratching noises and screech it’s inhuman scream. I caught sight of it one night as it departed it’s home via the chimney… it was a Possum. A Brushtail Possum to be exact (Trichosurus vulpecula).
I have spent many nights dreaming of the ways I would deal with this possum… perhaps roasted with some homegrown vegitables? Stewed in a nice cassarole, or maybe just fried. It is illegal to intentionally kill a possum in Tasmania unless it is causing you financial hardship (such as a farmer who is loosing products). Yet I still dreamt of catching the little creature and taking my revenge. I would, of course, cure it’s hide and make myself some nice warm clothes. Once caught I would finally be able to seal the chimney and prevent future intruders.
While at a friends house recently for a BBQ I explained my problem with the Possum. He offered me the use of one of his Possum traps. This was exactly what I needed. That night I placed the trap on my roof, near the chimney and baited it with a apple plucked from my orchid. I only had to wait for one night, then in the morning my children told me that we had finally caught the possum. I ran upstairs and examined the creature. It was much smaller than I expected (due to the noise it made in the walls I thought it was the size of a small dog), yet I was happy regardless. I brought it downstairs to show my family and take some photos while I laughed with joy. My possum problems were finally over. While I looked at the small marsupial I recalled my original plans to roast it. Looking into it’s large, intelligent, eyes I wondered how I could have entertained such thoughts. I used to love possums, seeing them as one of Australia’s great animals. They are cute, smart, and can be very tame when they have been treated well. I couldn’t hurt this small creature. I decided that I would drive him a couple of kilometres up the road to the national forest. There are many large trees there that could be home to this little guy. So after this was completed I returned home and started basking in the glow of a job completed. It was then that Kitty informed me that while I was out she heard more possum noises from the laundry wall. I set up the trap again for another night.
The next morning my children told me that we were successful once more, we had caught another Possum. I examined this one and noticed it was larger than the previous one, yet still not as large as I thought it could be from the noises I have heard. I once more bundled this one into the car and took it for a drive, releasing it at the same location as the last one.
When I arrived home I set the trap up once more, and in the morning I was greeted with the largest possum yet… obviously this one was the parent. This fellow had been working hard to free himself from the cage, hurting his nose a little in the process. After examining him I decided it didn’t appear to be serious, so I broght the whole family with me to release him to the wilderness.
I don’t know how I feel about Possums… they are definately cute little animals that should be protected and admired. On the other hand they are noisy, can make large messes, are annoying, and (after several incidents I had with them when I was younger) can be a little scary. I am happy that they are now in a wilder, more appropriate location… just as long as they don’t come back to my house.