This article is solely focused on finding out if opossums do eat ticks and mosquitoes. This might sound weird to you but the reality is that opossums will feed on just about anything they come across. Just like humans, these creatures are omnivores.
Do you find opossums cute and wonder if they could be kept as pets? These creatures can be kept around your surroundings but to what end you might ask.
Well, for your information, opossums are pest predators and will kill certain pests while grooming.
The central question here seeks to find out if they eat mosquitoes and ticks. However, before we start answering the question, it’s necessary to state that opossums also feed on a variety of other things.
These include fruits, vegetables, pet food, seeds, insects, and more.
Will Opossums Eat Ticks And Mosquitoes?
Opossums are known to eat ticks. However, information on whether these creatures eat mosquitoes is still sketchy.
There are claims in some quarters that opossums indeed feed on mosquitoes while others are in denial. Still, there’s silence regarding this question from other possible sources of information.
Our verdict is that opossums eating mosquitoes is still conjecture with no definite conclusion.
Since we’ve established the fact that opossums do eat ticks, let’s further expand on that by getting into more details.
Opossums can be Scary But Are Hardly Threats
One of the things that make opossums scary is their weird or odd appearance. This is made even scarier by their hissing sounds made when they feel threatened. Apart from these, the reality is that opossums are hardly aggressive.
One of the very exciting characteristics of opossums is that they play dead when frightened by a possible predator. They even go as far as frothing in the mouth.
In light of this information, it will be necessary to state common facts about opossums.
First, apart from controlling the spread of insects (including ticks), opossums also prey on venomous snakes and other rodents. They hardly cause damage to homes such as done by rodents.
In other words, you’ll hardly have your electrical wires or telephone lines chewed on.
What more? Opossums won’t dig up flower bulbs, won’t scavenge or scatter your trashcan and more importantly, they do not transmit diseases.
These characteristics make them tolerable creatures to have around your home.
You Stand to Benefit From Opossum Presence in your Surroundings
Ticks are known to feed on blood and can also transmit diseases such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF), babesiosis, ehrlichiosis, and Powassan Virus diseases. Others include Anaplasmosis, Borrelia mayonii diseases, and Borrelia miyamotoi diseases among others.
With opossums around, these diseases are contained as they help get rid of them and also feed on them. Ticks get their blood meal from animals including humans. Even with the fact that opossums kill and feed on them, ticks aren’t hindered but dare to still draw blood from their predator.
How Opossums Feed (get Rid) on Ticks
Opossums are known to be thorough groomers. Now, most animals do groom themselves however, only a few (if any) are ever as effective as opossums when grooming. Opossums are known to kill off about 90% of ticks on their body.
This is significant because most animals aren’t close to such figures when it comes to getting rid of pests (including ticks) from their fur. Now, as opossums kill such a significant number of ticks, humans and other animals benefit because such parasitic pests never find their way to their bodies.
While killing ticks, opossums will much on the same thus eliminating them through digestion.
You May Want To Consider Having Opossums Around
Having seen the benefits derived from opossums, you may want to have a few of them around your surroundings. If you’ve not considered this before, you should give it a serious thought as opossums pose no threat and danger to you, your kids as well as your surroundings.
This will be exciting for readers who are interested in adopting natural pest control measures such as the introduction of predators. To do this, you’ll need to know that opossums feed on a variety of stuff.
Opossums can be called one of nature’s garbage disposal guys. This is for a good reason simply because they feed on almost everything they can find including on the carcasses of other dead animals.
When garbage is scattered around your yard, you can bet on opossums to munch on it.
Rattlesnakes are feared by most people; however, these are targeted by opossums as they prey on such snakes. Dead weeds and plants also serve as part of the diet choice for opossums.
As long as you have these creatures in your yard, rattlesnakes find your surroundings hostile. Plus you get the benefit of protection from ticks.
Attracting Opossums to Your Yard
Not everyone will be fully convinced to have opossums around their home.
These creatures might be creepy for a lot of people. However, if you’re excited about the prospects of opossums getting rid of ticks for you, then you might want to go for it.
Now that you know, you might think twice before calling animal control when you notice an opossum. These are beneficial to you in many ways. You might want to create a nesting area for them around your home.
There’s a lot of online information on the characteristics of opossum habitats. Knowing this gives you the edge to create or mimic such environments and make them comfortable around your home.
Successfully doing this means you and your family are protected.
In other words, you won’t be exposed to risks of contracting Lyme disease from ticks again.
This article has enabled you to confirm the fact that opossums do feed on ticks. However, about whether mosquitoes are also included, we’ve clearly stated that this isn’t yet verified as there is conflicting information.
Pest control is best achieved through the introduction of predators. This tilts the fight against ticks and other pests in your favor, thus eliminating the problem within a short time.