Test Your Opossum Knowledge | Pet Talk
HOST: They’re actually American marsupial that we
have in this entire continent. CLAIRE: Oh, my gosh. So that makes
them kind of unique. CLAIRE: Yeah.
– All right. Are you ready to
play Fact or Fake? Yes, let’s do it. – All right, so here’s
a bit of information– CLAIRE: OK. –and you’re going to
have to decide whether it’s fact or whether it’s fake. CLAIRE: OK. We’re going to ask the
audience to weigh in and help you make that decision, OK? OK, great. Yeah. First, fact or fake? Possums hang upside
down by their tails, OK? Audience, what do
you guys think? CLAIRE: OK.
HOST: I’m seeing– CLAIRE: It’s mixed.
HOST: It’s mixed. CLAIRE: It’s so mixed. HOST: I think a little bit more
maybe leaning towards fact. I don’t know.
What do you think? OK.
Let’s go with the audience. We’ll go with fact. OK. This is actually fake. Oh. [buzzer] We see in cartoons
these animals hanging from their tail. CLAIRE: Yeah. It– it just
doesn’t happen, folks. Now, let me see if I can
show you guys the tail again. The tail is what
we call prehensile. You can see how it’s
curling around my hand here. Prehensile means that they
can actually grip with it, and they do use it sort
of like a fifth limb. The little guys might
actually you know, be able to hang
from a tree branch. But the adults here– they’re way too big. They do not hang
from their tails. All right, question
number two, fact or fake? Possums can survive
venomous snake bites. What does everyone think? [crowd murmuring] Another mixed bag
here, but I’m seeing lots of people saying fact.
– Yeah. It’s– I’m going to go
with fact for that one. OK. Well, you would be correct.
– Yes. [ding] So cool. These animals are able to
metabolize snake venom. CLAIRE: Wow. HOST: A copperhead,
a water moccasin, even a rattlesnake
could bite this animal, and its body is able to
break down that snake venom so that really it
doesn’t impact it at all. And one of the reasons for that
is that possums feed on snakes, including venomous snakes. So I don’t know. If it were me, and
it was a choice of a, you know, a venomous
snake hanging out my backyard and a
possum, I think I would be picking the possum, right?
CLAIRE: That’s true. It’s protective. So these are very beneficial
animals in many ways. All right. Question number
three, fact or fake? Possums often spread Lyme
disease by harboring ticks. What do you guys
think in the audience? All right, you guys are
right down the middle on every one of these. CLAIRE: Oh, gosh. HOST: What do you think, Claire? I’m going to go with fact. OK. It is actually a fake. [buzzer] OK, cool. Here’s the thing about–
about ticks and possums. New research has come out just
in the last couple of years that show that possums are
one of the best animals to help minimize
the tick population. Here’s why. They’re so good at
grooming themselves that they consume up to
5,000 ticks, one possum, in any given year, OK? So, again, if
you’re considering, you know, what wild
animals might be, you know, more
welcome in your yard– CLAIRE: Yeah. HOST: –this is one of the
ones that you want around, especially if you
live in an area that has a high tick population
and is spreading Lyme disease to people and pets. Awesome. So at the end
of the day, I hope I’ve convinced at
least some of you out there that possums
are pretty awesome. Thank you so much. Thank you for the information. And we’ll be right