Homeowners often find themselves playing unwilling hosts to a variety of uninvited guests – not the kind that rings your doorbell, but those that scurry above your head. Yes, we're talking about possums that find their way onto our roofs.
While these creatures may seem harmless and even endearing at a distance, their presence on your roof can lead to a lot of issues, ranging from structural damage to health concerns.
In this article, we'll explore the reasons why possums like to hang out on your roof and the things homeowners can do to protect their homes from these furry intruders.
But first, let’s talk about why possums on your roof are not a good thing.
Why you should get rid of the possums on your roof ASAP
Possums can cause significant damage to your roof and roof cavity. They often chew on wood, electrical wires, and even plumbing, which can lead to costly repairs and compromise the structural integrity of your roof over time.
Possums can carry various diseases and parasites, such as ticks, fleas, and mites, which can be harmful to humans and pets.
Noise and Disturbance
You probably already know, but the noise created by possums moving and scratching in the roof can be quite disturbing, especially at night. This can disrupt your sleep and overall peace in your home.
Attracting Other Pests
The presence of possums can attract other pests like rats, mice, and insects, as they are drawn to the food scraps and nesting materials possums bring in.
Signs there’s a possum in your roof
Noises at Night
As nocturnal creatures, possums are active at night. If you hear thumping, scratching, or scurrying sounds coming from your roof space after dark, it's a strong indicator that a possum may have taken up residence there.
Another sign to watch out for is possum droppings. These are usually larger than rat droppings and tend to be found in small piles. You might notice these droppings in your ceiling cavity, or around your property where the possum travels.
Check your roof for signs of damage such as chewed wood, damaged ductwork or insulation, and torn roofing materials. These damages are not just indicative of their presence but can also lead to further issues if not addressed.
A strong, musky odour is often a giveaway of a possum's presence. They leave behind a distinctive smell in areas they inhabit, which can be quite noticeable in enclosed spaces like roof voids.
Visible Entry Points
Inspecting your roof for holes or gaps is crucial. Possums can squeeze through small spaces to enter roof areas. So, any visible damage or gaps in the roof, eaves, or soffits can be potential entry points for possums.
Remember, in Australia, possums are a protected species, so any intervention should be humane and legal. If you do find a possum living on your roof, consider contacting a professional for safe and ethical removal.
How to get rid of possums on the roof
If you’re tired of the possums disturbing your sleep every night, below are some ways you can take action.
Rehousing possums in nesting boxes
A humane and effective way to manage possums is by rehousing them in nesting boxes. These boxes can either be purchased or custom-built and should be placed in nearby trees or suitable locations in your garden.
The design of the nesting box needs to be robust, weather-resistant, and appropriately sized for possums. Transitioning possums to their new home might require some patience, and occasionally, placing some fruit or other food in the nesting box can encourage them to move in.
Blocking access to your roof
Preventing possums from returning to your roof involves securing potential entry points. Below are some ways to do it:
Quassia Chips - These are natural deterrents made from the bark of the Quassia tree. You can place these chips around your garden or near potential entry points to your roof. Possums dislike the smell and taste of quassia chips.
Light - Installing bright, sensor-activated lights can deter possums, as they are nocturnal and sensitive to bright lights.
Chicken wire or wood - Use these materials to block off any gaps or entry points in your roof. Ensure that these barriers are secure and cover all potential access points.
Hiring a Professional
In cases where managing possums is challenging or if you're unsure about doing it yourself, hiring a professional possum catch-and-release operator is advisable. They are experts who are equipped with the necessary skills, tools, and legal permissions to safely and humanely handle possums.
They can effectively trap and release possums, adhering to wildlife protection regulations. Professional operators can also offer valuable advice on preventing future possum invasions and assist in implementing deterrent measures and fortifying your property against these creatures.
It's important to note that in New South Wales and many regions, possums are protected by law. This protection means it is illegal to harm, relocate, or kill them.
Any removal of possums must be conducted with utmost care to prevent injury or distress to the animal. Trapping possums usually requires a specific license, typically granted only to trained and qualified wildlife professionals.
Importance of monitoring and maintaining your roof regularly
Checking and fixing your roof regularly is important to keep possums away. When you check your roof often, you can spot early signs of possums, like their droppings or scratch marks. This way, you can fix any small damage before it turns into bigger damage.
It's also good to fix any broken parts of the roof quickly and make sure there are no open spaces where possums can get in. A well-kept roof is less inviting for possums looking for a place to stay.
Taking care of your roof not only helps keep possums out but also saves you money in the long run. You can avoid costly repairs later and the extra costs that come with getting rid of possums and fixing the damage they cause. If you need help in maintaining your roof, contact us. We can inspect your roof for possible leaks, damages, and animal infestations and fix them for you!