Hi, Mr. Nature here–and you do not have to do what these people do to get a possum out of your garbage can.
This morning when I went out to ride my bike, I discovered two young possums sleeping in one of our garbage cans–which means they climbed in to get something nice and disgusting and then couldn’t climb out.
Really, all you have to do is gently turn the can over on its side and then leave them alone. They’ll just get up and leave. You don’t have to freak them out by kicking the bottom of the can.
Another time, I went to put a bag in the can and spotted a very, very big possum inside it. Very, very dead, too. Oh, spiffy. You know how road-killed animals get all stiff and flat after a while? This possum looked like it had been dead for several days.
Well, I couldn’t just leave it there. I tipped it out of the can–
And it got up, hissed at me, and ran away!
“Playing possum” can be quite convincing.