All animals find a peaceful place for themselves to sleep. They either sleep by hiding behind a bush, climbing a tree, or sometimes underground caves, but where do possums sleep?
Possums sleep in nests inside hollow trees or dens located in caves. They are also found asleep in isolated buildings as well as attics. As they are nocturnal animals and come out during the night, they need a well-protected place to sleep for the day.
So, a possum generally finds extremely well-shaded and covered places so that it feels safe to sleep. Also, the site must protect the possum from lurking daytime predators. In this article, we will have a look at all the places where a sleeping possum can be found.
Different Species Of Possums Having Specific Sleeping Habitats
There are so many different species of possums and each one will have a different sleeping place as per its own habitat. For instance:
1- The Ringtail Possum
The ringtail possum belongs to South Australia. It resides in hollow trees and builds up its nest by stacking dry leaves. They sleep on them during the day.
2- The Rock-Haunting Ringtail Possum
This specie of possums is commonly found in the rocky areas of Western Australia. They tend to sleep on the rock ledges as they are well protected. This keeps the rock-haunting ringtail possum protected from predators.
3- The Little Pygmy/Tasmanian Or Eastern Pygmy Possum
It is the smallest possum in the world. It lives in Tasmania. They build dome-shaped nests for themselves. The nests are made up of tree barks. It offers them a dry and safe place for sleeping.
4- The Common Brushtail Possum
The common Brushtail Possum is the second-largest in the world. This possum is native to the land of Australia. Since the possums are arboreal in their nature, they prefer resting inside caves, hollows as well as house rooftops.
5- The Western Pygmy Possum
They are also native to the southwest as well as southern Australia. They make nests out of tree bark. They use blabber as the building material. It is a type of bird and its feathers are preferred by a possum for building its sleeping place.
6- The Feathertail Glider Possum
It is also called the pygmy gliding possum. It is the smallest of the gliding possums in the world. This can be located in Eastern Australia. It prefers sleeping inside hollow trees. The nests are further filled with leaves to make a comfortable small bed.
7- The Common Spotted Cuscus
It is also known as cuscus. It is native to New Guinea and some other parts of Australia. This possum sleeps on rocks, and tree roots as well as on the branches of trees.
What Time Do Possums Come Out At Night?
Possums come out when night-time starts, usually after sunset. A possum spends most of its time being lazy and sleeping during the daytime. Only when the light fades away that a possum rises and comes out in search of food.
So, what do possums do by sleeping all day? They lay low and protect themselves from the nearby predators in their habitat.
If a possum’s den or nest is well-protected, it will keep the possums hidden, reducing their chances of being discovered.
What Time Of Night Are Opossums Most Active?
After sunset, the possums become very active and agile. So by that time, the clock has struck 6:00 pm.
Possums roam around and do their exploring during the entire night. They remain active till 8:00 am. Other possums like to come out late, from 10:00 pm to 8:00 am.
once the day has started correctly, they return to their sleeping places and go to sleep immediately as their stomachs are full.
Where Do Possums Sleep In The City?
Other than forests and lush green areas, possums can be found in an area that is dry, safe, and sheltered. They make such a place their den, and after their food search at night, they come back to it during the day to sleep.
There are a lot of places in the city where possums can be found sleeping quietly. These are:
Attics are cozy, comfortable as well as warm. They also keep the possums safe and protected from the predators of the day. That is why a lot of people see possums sleeping in attics.
How To Get Rid Of Possums In The Attic
People who have possums in their attics are not happy with them. Though the possums will not disturb your sleep at night as they are out and about, they will leave droppings behind that make your place dirty.
Possums can also cause damage to the insulation inside your attic. Here are a few ways by which you can get rid of the possums inside the attic:
You can use methods of pest control and use a live trap
Once you have captured the possum during its sleep, you can remove the animal from your premises
Live trapping is not only practical, but it is also safe
You can also shoot the animal and then get rid of its dead body
You can also kill a possum by giving it pest poison.
2- Between Buildings
Possums can also be found nesting in between old buildings and are not in use. Possums make a nest between buildings. Possums make materials outside to build nests and make a comfortable place for themselves.
3- Possum Sleeping On the Ground
Possums usually prefer dry places for sleeping. On the ground level, they can be found in two areas most commonly:
All those possums that live near the farmlands use barns for sleeping. They gather hay from the fields and put it inside the barns to make a bed for themselves.
Possums like comfortable places and try their best to make one for themselves. A barn also offers them protection along with darkness.
Crevices inside rocks are one of the most preferred places for Possums. These are sturdy spots. Their tiny bodies can fit inside them easily. The predators cannot enter as they have narrow openings.
Possums can sleep here without any disturbance. So there is no danger of being attacked by any other animals.
Possum Nest In Tree
There are a lot of trees that have hollow holes inside them. These holes exist due to attacks by fungi. Such places are perfect for a possum to nest in.
Although most possums sleep on the ground, the arboreal species prefer sleeping inside the trees. This keeps them safe and protected from predators.
Where Do Possums Sleep In The Daytime?
Generally, possums find a dry and suitable place to sleep in. That is why they are commonly found in the caves of other animals, woodpiles, hollow stumps, and the spaces present underneath buildings.
Possums have a habit of insulating their dens with dried leaves, insulating materials, and grass. Though a possum will not especially dig a hole for itself, it will gather all that it needs to make it feel like home.
Where Do Possums Sleep In the Winter?
Like every other animal, possums prefer a warm and cozy place for winter. They sleep in places like woodchuck burrows, brush piles, and hollow trees.
Though possums are not the most intelligent animals, they will line their dens or burrows of other animals with leaves and dry grass.
How To Make A Winter Shelter For Possums?
You can set up a den box for possums that are visiting. A possum needs a dry and cozy place to sleep in, and it can be made by:
- You can do rubber matting of the den. Make sure that it is not so long or has any air spaces inside them
- To make them feel at home, you can put dried leaves and hay inside
- Last but not least, make sure to place the den in a dark place so that no light reaches the den.
- This way, possums can be protected from harsh winter.
Why Do Possums Sleep So Much?
It may seem like they are sleeping a lot, but that is mainly because they spend their entire day sleeping while keeping awake at night.
These animals are nocturnal and come out at night to gather food.
Such animals have a sleep cycle that varies from the rest of the other animals. Coming out at night benefits them and keeps them safe from the predators that roam around during the day.
How Do Possums Sleep?
It is a myth that possums usually sleep by hanging their tails to sleep. Though these animals have unusual behavior, hanging with their seats to sleep is not one. They like to crouch in their dens and sleep there.
Possums are good discovers and will look around to find burrows of other animals so that they can sneak in when they are gone and sleep for as long as the other animals are out.
How Long Do Possums Sleep?
Generally, possums sleep for an average of 18 hours. However, the sleep pattern may vary from possum to possum. On average, the possums will sleep throughout the day and come out mainly during the eight hours of the night.
So that leaves about 16 to 18 hours for them to sleep. They conserve their energy so that it can be utilized during the night and then go out searching for food.
How Often Do Possums Sleep?
Possums do not sleep frequently. Instead, they take a long nap that lasts for more than 12 hours or half a day. They spend the earlier part of the day sleeping, protecting themselves from sunlight that they cannot see correctly.
During the later part of the night, they come out and use their night vision to eat and travel to other places. That is their prime time for being on the move.
There are a few features that are common to all possum dens. They are:
- A den should be in a sheltered place where there is no light
- A den should be dry
- It should be safe
- It should be protected
- It should have some insulating materials to keep it a bit warm.
Do Possums Sleep In One Place For Long?
Possums are small animals, and though they try to protect themselves against predators, they cannot keep doing this for long.
As they are marsupials, they do not stay in a specific place for a long time.
Only a female possum hides in a home for a long time as she has tiny babies and cannot relocate them again and again.
Summing Things Up
Possums are tiny creatures that normally sleep during the day and will come out only at night to look for food. Depending on their habitat, they find suitable places for themselves to sleep in. However, all the places that they sleep in, must be well-protected, warm, and dry.
- Michigan State University
- Possums Behavior- PAWS