Friday, September 5, 2008

Capsicum spray used on rampaging possum

POLICE officers have used capsicum spray to subdue a rampant possum that had been terrorising a family in their home for hours.

The brushtail possum, described as being "as big as a fat cat", went on a two-hour rampage after attacking a friend of the family, then bailing up mum Andrea Norris and her two children in a car.

Mrs Norris was forced to call police for help after she was unable to contact wildlife officers.

The incident happened at the Norris family home in Warrnambool, in southwest Victoria.

"We had some visitors around for tea, Mark Hammond and his son Andrew. Mark went around to feed the possum a bit of bread with my five-year-old son Lachlan so he could tell his kinder mates about it," Ms Norris said.

"Mark always wears shorts and the possum jumped on his leg and sank in the claws and teeth. He was trying to shake it off but it was well attached. Mark finished with a couple of holes in his leg and a few scratches."

Ms Norris was unable to reach Department of Sustainability and Environment wildlife officers so she called Warrnambool police.

"They walked straight up and capsicum sprayed the possum," she said.

"Unfortunately, at the same time I wound down the car window and we all got a dose as well and spent the night coughing. Then police grabbed one of the kids' toy rake and chased the possum away."

The possum remains at large.,23599,24297869-13762,00.html

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