This is the moment an opossum does a good impression of playing dead with all limbs rigid and unmoving as it is lifted out of a cupboard in a family home.
The marsupial was rescued from an apartment at the Altos de Los Sauces residential complex in the district of Pueblo Nuevo in Panama.
Members of the National Directorate of Environmental, Rural and Tourist Police located the opossum and managed to safely place it in an animal carrier.
In the video shared by the National Police of Panama on Monday, an officer is seen wearing protective gloves as he approaches the cupboard and tries to grab the opossum hiding behind a pile of books and other objects.
He then manages to grab the sneaky marsupial and places it in a carrier.
A woman says in the background: “Poor little animal.”
The police said the opossum was then released in the Soberania National Park.
It is unclear how the animal found itself in the woman’s apartment in the first place.
Possums and opossums look very similar but are actually two different animals, with opossums living in the Americas while possums are native to Australia, New Guinea and Eastern Indonesia.
The concept of playing dead in order not to attract unwanted attention is well known in the animal kingdom and the possums are particularly good at it – so much so that it even coined the phrase “playing possum” to indicate playing dead.
Opossums which are different animals also have a similar playing dead stunt in which they enter a catatonic state that has a similar effect, but unlike the possum, it is not acting. The opossum’s body actually enters a catatonic state in response to fear, but in the case of this little animal, it clearly did not last long as it tries to dash for freedom as soon as it was put into the cage.
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Story By: Maja Mishevska, Sub-Editor: Marija Stojkoska, Agency: Newsflash
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