Opossums Don't Play Around

Opossums can't "play dead" on demand; it's an involuntary defense mechanism kicked in when they are scared. First, they will make a horrifying screech. If the predator isn't scared away, the opossum will become paralyzed and appear completely dead.

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Key Facts In This Video

  1. Opossums are the only marsupials native to North America. 00:25

  2. Opossums have two-pronged penises. 01:08

  3. When "playing dead," opossums will peel their lips back, foam at the mouth, and give off a noxious odor from their anal glands. 02:00

Written by Curiosity Staff June 15, 2015