25 April, Baby Opossum

From Wes’s Facebook post:

3 am drop off. Baby Opossum. Fell off mom. Found in road. I am going to shave and shower at some point today. I need sleep. … I can fix him.

 

The Common or Virginia Opossum, Didelphis virginiana, is the only marsupial currently in existence in North America. Most people are familiar with the marsupials of Australia, such as the kangaroo and wallaby, who carry their tiny young in abdominal pouches until they are old enough to fend for themselves. The Opossum does the same. Even after the babies are too large for the pouch, they will cling to their mother’s fur for quite some time, being carried along with her wherever she goes.

Opossums (or possums, as they’re commonly called) have opposable thumbs and prehensile tails, making them superb climbers. They are omnivores, eating a large variety of fruits and vegetation as well as insects, carrion, and even small rodents. Many people have heard that opossums are great at helping to keep down the tick population. They are generally peaceful and harmless, but will defend themselves if cornered.

 

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