On the evening of the 23rd of December, I heard some hoarse panting in the backyard, but it was just my dogs (ouch!). I went to investigate and found that Joey and Phoebe had fenced this little guy.
I went back for the camera while he waited to have his picture snapped. He kept waiting there for several hours. I know possums aren’t renowned for their quickness, but this guy was really not in any kind of hurry whatsoever.
Many people are repulsed by possums, but I find them quite interesting and even a little bit cute. It’s hard not to like North America’s only marsupial even if we usually use his nickname instead of the full Opossum that separates him from his Australian kin.
One summer while working at Camp Periwinkle, I was walking back to my cabin in the middle of the night. I had my flashlight off to better admire the stars when I bumped into one of the camp cats.
Or so I thought. (Maybe we humans shouldn’t always be so quick to judge the quickness of other species.)
I bent down to pet the cat, but I was surprised by how coarse its fur was. In an instant, I grew suspicious and flicked on my light to find myself face-to-snout with a possum. He regarded me with indifference as I jumped back and into the air. I’m forever grateful the little guy didn’t bite me as I’ve heard rabies shots are not something one willingly signs up for.
Joey and Phoebe, however, being much more practical, knew last month’s possum as an intruder and had they been able to climb the fence, they might have gotten a nice possum stew for their Christmas dinner. As things stood, though, they received their usual bowls of kibble.