- About as big as that of a domestic cat
- Big oval shaped ears with catlike whiskers
- Small head with a pointed nose
- Has a thick and woolly fur that is typically brown although some will sport a grey fur
- Possums have sharp claws with long bushy black tail
Possums are marsupials; they carry their young in a pouch. Female possums usually give birth in the winter. Gestation lasts for about 17 days with the newborn finding its way to the mother’s pouch to feed. Possums usually give birth to one offspring at a time. Their offspring reach maturity after a year and come out fully grown at 10 months.
Possums are generally solitary in nature and stay within their own territories which they mark with a scent that they secrete from glands on their chest. They establish nesting areas in woodlands or forests under vegetation or trees. They are also nocturnal creatures and so people don’t usually encounter them at daytime.
Possums maintain a varied diet and will feed on almost anything often causing damage to agricultural crops which makes them an important commercial pest. They are also known to eat insects, bird eggs and even small birds. They are native to several countries like Sulawesi, New Guinea and Australia although they are also fairly common in New Zealand where they were introduced in the early 19th century.