My name is Charlotte, sometimes known as Ms Lottie, occasionally as The Slightly Mad Quilt Lady. This is my blog, where you'll find me writing a lot about my quilting and textile arts and a little about my family's life in a small seaside town in New Zealand. Haere mai!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Last night there was a possum on our boat

Yes, possums are tree-dwelling marsupials who eat vegetation and fruit.  So what was it doing on our boat?  Who knows?  Maybe it wanted to go sailing!

It arrived dry, so I believe it walked down the gangplank.  And it left wet, very wet.  Possums can swim apparently.

There are no action photos to accompany this post.  After all, who wants to see pictures of my husband in his night attire (it's too hot to wear pj's at the moment...) chasing a stinky possum round the back deck with the scoop net he uses for fish?!

He didn't get it in the net but he did scare it overboard.  And here's the funny part.  It swam to our port side jetty, climbed the poles, ran along the jetty to the back deck of the Store.  I thought we were in the clear then because it can get from there back onto dry land.  But no, the stupid thing turned the corner and ran back down our starboard jetty and jumped onto the neighbours boat!

We woke them up (their hatches were open so we thought it was best they didn't meet a possum face to face in bed) and the first thing our neighbour asked - in his very English accent - "Am I dreaming?!"  The next thing he said was, "Where's my camera?"

The possum hightailed it up the sail on the roller furler.  It kept going higher and higher and even unrolling the sail didn't dislodge it.  It made it to the top of the mast (which must be a good 15 metres or 50 feet) and sat there.  Probably changing it's mind about the wisdom of a life at sea.

We all gave up at that point.  Closed all our doors and hatches and went back to bed.  This morning it's gone.  And yes, we checked the anchor chain locker ;-)

Here's a photo of possums my sister took in Australia, where they are a native species and protected.  They may look cute, but in New Zealand, where they were introduced for hunting for fur, they are considered noxious pests which destroy our forests and eat native birds eggs.


  1. And our fruit crops if given the chance. We and the neighbouring Quarry Park run poison bait stations. If we didn't we would not get any undamaged fruit ( it was a bit like that the first few years we were here but we have knocked the numbers way back I am pleased to tell )

  2. Oh sorry, I am laughing! Funny story, I was just picturing it all unfolding!

  3. Friends who have a yacht moored offshore near Mangonui say they've heard possums on their boat at night, and I'm pretty sure the possums didn't have a dinghy to get out to them! They assumed it was the smell of food that had attracted them.

    1. A few days before we had been talking with a friend about his experiences with possums on boats. We felt a little jinxed!

  4. Haaaa hahaha! I remember that pic, the silly things are a nuisance here too in suburbia, but yes, protected as you say.

    1. It felt a little surreal. We don't get mice or ants, but we do get possums!

  5. Well hello. So if Mouse had his night attire on... but doesn't wear PJ's... what did he have on? Or was it like the time my hubby was out killing a possum in his hmmm... natural state?? Well, that would be both the hubby and the possum...


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