A Virginia Opossum is a common North American marsupial that lives in the eastern US and south eastern Canada. It is a nocturnal omnivore that will eat anything from fruit to small mammals. The opossum's most distinctive physical characteristics are its long, grayish-white face with blue-whitish eyes, naked pink ears, prehensile tail, and thirteen nipples on the female's thirteen-lobed belly. These features give it a passing resemblance to a rat or an avian creature instead of their usual mammalian appearance.
The opossum has 50 teeth compared with just 32 teeth for most placentals which allows them to have a varied diet unlike many other mammals who stick to a particular niche. However, this means that opossums must practice continuous dental wear throughout their lives which can cause infections to become much more common in older opossums.
The mating season for the Virginia Opossum is between January and June during which time the male will guard the female until she has finished birthing her litter after an unusually short gestation period of just 12 days.