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Do Possums Eat Rabbits?

Do Possums Eat Rabbits?

By Mildred T Koerner on May 16, 2023

Possums and rabbits are two of the most common animals found in North America.

While possums are known for their scavenging habits, many people wonder if they would ever eat a rabbit.

This question has sparked much debate among wildlife enthusiasts, with some arguing that possums do indeed prey on rabbits while others claim it is highly unlikely.

In this article, we will delve into the world of possums and rabbits to determine whether these two species ever cross paths as predator and prey.

We'll explore the feeding habits of both animals, including what types of food they prefer and how they hunt or scavenge for their meals.

So buckle up and get ready to uncover the truth about whether possums really do eat rabbits!

Understanding The Diet Of Possums

Possums are omnivores, which means they eat both plants and animals.

They have a diverse diet that includes fruits, insects, snails, small mammals, birds, and eggs.

However, it is a common misconception that possums prey on rabbits as their primary source of food.

While possums may occasionally feed on young rabbits or rabbit carcasses if they come across them in the wild, they do not actively seek out rabbits as prey.

Possums are nocturnal animals and prefer to hunt for food at night when other creatures are asleep.

In general, possums tend to avoid larger predators and instead focus on smaller sources of food that are more easily accessible.

Now let's take an overview of rabbit eating habits to understand why this might be the case.

An Overview Of Rabbit Eating Habits

As we discussed in the previous section, possums have a diverse diet that includes both plant and animal matter.

While they are not typically considered to be predatory animals, there is some evidence to suggest that they may occasionally prey on small mammals such as rabbits.

For rabbit owners, this can be concerning news.

If you have pet rabbits or live near wild populations of these animals, it's important to take steps to protect your rabbits from potential predators like possums.

This could mean keeping them indoors at night, building secure outdoor enclosures, or installing motion-activated lights and cameras around their living area.

By being proactive about protecting your rabbits, you can help ensure that they remain safe and healthy within the food chain.

In the next section, we will examine the relationship between possums and rabbits more closely, exploring how these two species interact with each other in natural environments.

Examining The Relationship Between Possums And Rabbits

Imagine a scenario where a possum and a rabbit cross paths in the wild. The question arises: will the possum attack, kill, and eat the rabbit?

While it is not common for possums to prey on rabbits, they are opportunistic feeders with omnivorous diets that include small animals like rodents, birds, and even insects.

Therefore, if presented with an opportunity, a hungry or threatened possum may indeed go after a rabbit.

However, it's important to note that these situations are rare and usually occur only when food sources are scarce or competition is high.

Furthermore, some studies suggest that rabbits can actually be harmful to possum populations by competing for resources such as shelter and food.

Ultimately, while there may be instances of possums eating rabbits, this behavior is not typical and should not be a cause for concern in most cases.

As we delve further into examining the relationship between possums and rabbits, it's important to understand the various factors that can influence possums' feeding behaviors.

Factors That Can Influence Possums' Feeding Behaviors

Possums are known to be omnivores, meaning they eat both plant and animal-based food.

Their diet largely depends on the availability of food sources in their habitat.

Since possums are scavengers, they tend to consume whatever is available at the time.

This means that wild rabbits can indeed be a source of food for them.

However, there are several factors that can influence possums' feeding behaviors towards rabbits.

For instance, if other more preferred sources of food such as fruits and insects are abundant in their environment, possums may not bother hunting down rabbits.

Additionally, possums usually feed during the night when rabbits are less active or hidden away in burrows.

Overall, while it's possible for possums to eat rabbits, it's not necessarily their primary choice of prey.

Conclusion: Do Possums Eat Rabbits?

After all that we've discussed the factors that can influence possums' feeding behaviors, and one question still lingers in our minds: do possums eat rabbits?

It seems like a straightforward inquiry, but the answer is not as simple as it appears. Let's explore this topic further.

While many people assume that possums are natural predators of rabbits and will attack them whenever they cross paths, the reality is quite different.

Possums are omnivorous creatures that mainly feed on insects, fruit, vegetables, and small animals such as rodents.

While opossums may kill rabbits if they're hungry enough or feel threatened, it's not a common occurrence.

In fact, there have been very few documented cases of animals attacking rabbits specifically because they were preyed upon by possums.

However, just because possums don't typically hunt down rabbits doesn't mean that these furry marsupials pose no threat to their fluffy counterparts.

Possums are known for being opportunistic feeders - which means that if an easy meal presents itself (such as a dead rabbit lying around), they won't hesitate to take advantage of it.

Additionally, while possums themselves might not be direct predators of rabbits, other animals such as foxes and coyotes certainly are - and if these larger carnivores spot rabbits hiding out in areas where possums commonly reside, then those bunnies could soon become lunch.

So while the relationship between possums and rabbits isn't necessarily predatory in nature, it's clear that these two species do interact with each other in complex ways that can pose a threat to some individual members of both groups.


In conclusion, possums are opportunistic feeders and their diet can vary depending on the availability of food in their environment.

While they primarily consume fruits, insects, and small vertebrates like rodents or birds, there have been instances where possums have eaten rabbits.

However, it is important to note that these occurrences are rare and not a common part of their diet.

Possums play an important role in controlling insect populations and maintaining ecological balance.

So let's appreciate these little marsupials for what they do best - scavenging through our backyard at night looking for tasty snacks while helping keep pests under control!



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