Virginia opossum are hunted because their meat, fat, and bones are believed to help with inflammation, colitis, gastritis, skin infections, heart attacks, epilepsy, allergies, dermatitis, and coughing.
Given the frequent urban habitation of Virginia opossums, interaction with humans is almost inevitable. These animals are unfortunately hunted for business, sport, and food.
Some cultures believe that Virginia opossums’ meat has medical properties. For instance, eating their meat in a soup is believed to help inflammation, colitis, gastritis and skin infections. Likewise, eating cooked Virginia opossum meat is believed to prevent heart attacks, using an ointment composed of opossum fat is believed to treat epilepsy, and infusing opossum bones in water is believe to treat allergies, dermatitis, and coughing.
Virginia opossums’ pelts may also be sold commercially.
Sources: (Alonso-Castro, et al., 2011; Jacobo-Salcedo, Alonso-Castro, & Zarate-Martinez, 2011; McManus, 1974; McRuer & Jones, 2009; Pérez-Hernandez, Lew, & Solari, 2016; Siciliano, 2013)
Image: Ambra Galassi