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Possum at the door

Posted January 15th, 2013 at 10:01 AM by Sylvano the Wasabus
Currently I have three weeks of work left, and then I am unemployed. It may be that I will be extended, or I may not be. Iím pretty sure that no one knows what theyíre doing.

But I was here yesterday when a possum came to the front door. We had a large winter storm the day before- supposedly the biggest in a decade. (but nothing compared to the ones I remember as a kid). We received a pile of snow and some blizzardy winds and the whole city sort of shut down. The schools were closed but I still had to go into work.

It was a quiet day, most of our clients didnít show up and by afternoon the place was empty. And thatís when I noticed the possum. He was standing in front of the two big glass doors- it looked like he was wondering how to come in. He wasnít that big- a juvenile Iíd say- and it may have even been a she.

I gathered all three of the staff that had made it in that day and we slowly moved closer to the glass door- maybe it sounds silly but nature is amazing to us city folk. Iíve only really seen dead bloated up possums at the side of the road.

However, when we got close we noticed that the possum was injured. It was in fact dragging its hind feet- and itís long possum tale was covered in ice. It had come to us for help....

I searched the internet for animal rescue places. Meanwhile the other employees kept an eye on the possum. It was snowing heavily again, and the little fellow was wandering down our extremely long handicap ramp. Wasnít that smart of him? I donít think he could have handled all those stairs...

There are two animal rehab places but neither one of them does pickups. We were going to have to catch the little guy ourselves.

I went out to talk to him. I know Iím bad at this. I tend to talk to animals- I guess I believe that they can understand what Iím saying from the sound of my voice. I had a cardboard box in hand and I approached our possum friend, explaining the situation and what we were proposing.

The possum responded by shaking violently. Was it fear? Was it cold? Was it rabid?

One employee, a spunky lady, volunteered to grab the possum and stuff him into the box. That sort of thing makes me nervous. I can do it and I have done it before but Iím certain that Iím too rough. We agreed to spunky ladyís plan and the skinny girl kept watch while spunky lady went to look for thick gloves.

Meanwhile the possum was almost at the end of the extremely long wheelchair ramp. The skinny girl put the cardboard box at the bottom and I was there watching as the little fella reached the box and climbed in. We closed the lid and the possum was packaged.

Iím the only one with a car so the delivery fell to me. Spunky lady volunteered to come along and hold on to the box. Our possum friend hadnít moved or stirred from his cardboard prison yet. Possum was equally quiet inside the car and on the trip, but we did get a hint of what musk glands are all about.

I had to drive through the snow bound town to the animal shelter- the one with the crematorium- which was the nearest official drop off for the animal rescue group. Almost no staff had made it in to the animal shelter so it took almost an hour for them to get organized enough to accept the possum. He peeked his head out once and we were delighted to see how invigorated he looked- his movements were quick and curious and his eyes were now sparkling- a direct contrast to when we had found him.

They carried the box away and he was gone, hopefully to better things. If he was too injured to survive at least he will be warm and will be put to sleep gently, instead of freezing in a snow storm. And of course he might go through rehab and end up free again.

This part of town is so grim these days we joked about him going into rehab, saying that the only way heíd been surviving was by dealing drugs to rodents.

I learned these things about possums:
They live short and fast- just two to four years from birth to breeding to old age.
They are robust and most donít get rabies or other viruses that fell other animals.
They are omnivores- eating rats and mice as well as fruit, vegetables and garbage.
I already knew they were marsupials and that they had prehensile tales but apparently the tale is not strong enough to hold up the entire animal- itís used as an aid in climbing.
Total Comments 6

Comments

Old
ZBeeblebrox's Avatar
Another interesting story...

You always seem to have very interesting things happen to you Sylvano...my life never has that kind of drama.
Posted January 15th, 2013 at 02:46 PM by ZBeeblebrox ZBeeblebrox is offline
Old
ZBeeblebrox's Avatar
Another interesting story...

You always seem to have very interesting things happen to you Sylvano...my life never has that kind of drama.
Posted January 15th, 2013 at 02:46 PM by ZBeeblebrox ZBeeblebrox is offline
Old
MegaSilver's Avatar
We have a few possums on our farm. They are very nice, and the cat's don't mind sharing the cat food with them during the night!

Very nice story, Sylvano, and nice to see you helping the possum out!
Posted January 15th, 2013 at 03:28 PM by MegaSilver MegaSilver is offline
Old
MegaSilver's Avatar
We have a few possums on our farm. They are very nice, and the cat's don't mind sharing the cat food with them during the night!

Very nice story, Sylvano, and nice to see you helping the possum out!
Posted January 15th, 2013 at 03:28 PM by MegaSilver MegaSilver is offline
Old
boromir96's Avatar
I hate Possums. We have some in our barn and they eat our chickens.
Posted January 15th, 2013 at 06:31 PM by boromir96 boromir96 is offline
Old
chas's Avatar
Good work!
Posted January 18th, 2013 at 08:08 PM by chas chas is offline
 
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