Possums are nocturnal marsupials that linger around wooded areas, marshes, and prairies. They like to walk through suburban neighborhoods, leaving the human occupants wondering what type of animal the droppings in their yard belong to.
Read on to learn what possum poop looks like, see possum poop images, and find out whether or not it is safe to take pets around it.
What Does Possum Poop Look Like?
Possum poop will often be in a pile or trail near leafy areas or trails that possums like to take during their nighttime journey. If you see a possum taking a specific route through your yard, you might find that he left you a gift in that exact spot the next morning.
Upon first glance, it is easy to think possum poop is dog poop. However, the color is particularly dark, and multiple pieces will usually be in a single file line.
Below, read the specific characteristics of possum droppings and how to differentiate them from the feces of other critters of the night.
Possum Poop Pictures
Below is an image of possum poop via Wildlife Removal:
Possum vs. Raccoon Poop: Differences Between Possum Poop and Raccoon Poop
Possums and raccoons are both nocturnal animals that like to roam similar areas. You may have seen both meandering about the neighborhood, leaving you to wonder which of them is leaving their droppings for you to deal with.
Regarding possums vs. raccoons, the feces have very different shapes. Possum poop is similar in shape to dog poop, while raccoon poop looks more like a rabbit’s.
Raccoon poop comes in the shape of little balls piled on each other. Sometimes, it might be a little more liquidy, like a small pile of mud. Either way, their poop has more texture. Also, you will probably see some small seeds in raccoons’ poop since that is a big part of their diet.
Possums do not eat seeds, so their poop will have a smoother appearance. While they can leave their feces in a pile, they often leave it in a trail, while raccoons keep it all in one place.
The size of possum poop varies with the animal’s size and diet. Most possum feces will be similar in size to that of a small dog, but larger possums with meatier diets might produce waste that is the same size as a medium-sized dog.
Possum poop tends to be uniform. There are few protrusions, and the remnants of food, like seeds and plants, are not visible.
Possum scat has a bit of a curl to the ends. Possums tend to leave tiny piles of these thick, somewhat curly droppings in short trails as they walk.
Possums have brown poop. Their waste grows mold quickly, though, so do not be surprised if there is a yellowish substance coating the outside.
Many home and property owners come across animal feces and are concerned about what animals may be lurking. Being able to identify the feces that wildlife and rodents leave behind will not only let you know what animals are in the area, but also can give clues as to how many of them are present.
At first, it can be distressing to find foreign looking animal feces in your home or on your property. Fears of aggressive or rabid animals, as well as the diseases they may carry are often the first worries.
Protecting your family and pets is of utmost importance. However, taking the time to correctly identify the feces is essential in assessing the threat or risk from the animals.
This research will also enable a home or property owner to devise an effective strategy for keeping any pest animals out of their homes, barns, or other areas where they are not welcome.
Scat Identification Techniques
- The first thing to do if you come across scat, or feces from animals, is to observe the location of the droppings. Notice where the feces are in relation to buildings, other structures, other animals, water, roads, and vegetation. Different animals will place their droppings in particular locations and this can be the first clue to identifying them.
- Next, observe the placement of the scat. Are the feces hidden or buried? Are they randomly dropped all over an area with seemingly little regard for placement, or are they tucked away in corners or neat piles? These factors can greatly narrow down the list of possible culprits.
- Note the size of the scat. If you are investigating feces found in your home or on your property, it is a good idea to obtain a ruler or tape measure that you can use to measure. Some animals’ feces may look identical to others from the same family, and size may be the only distinguishing feature. *REMEMEBR: animal feces can carry both diseases and parasites so they should never be handled without gloves.*
- What is the shape of the found fecal matter? Some shape characteristics to look for include if the feces are round, tapered at the ends, completely tubular, round pellets, twisted, or moist mounds.
- An additional clue to the species of animal leaving the scat is what is included in the feces. Berries, hair, seeds, and plant parts should all be looked for in the droppings. This information can be used to identify the animal that left it.
- Lastly, look around the area where you first identified the scat. In cases of feces from animals that have similar appearing feces to another species, it can be helpful to search for nearby footprints or tracks left by the animals. This can be used to confirm species.
Is Possum Poop Hazardous/Bad For Pets?
Do not touch possum poop by any means. Harmful bacteria live inside the waste that could cause illness in both humans and pets.
If there is possum poop near your home, consult a professional to safely remove it and then take precautions to deter possums from that area in the future.
Not sure about the droppings you’re seeing? Check out our other guides to animal scat: