I live in the City Heights neighborhood of Teralta East, the long thin sliver of flat land wedged between the busy major thoroughfares of University Avenue and El Cajon Boulevard on the south and north and Fairmount and Euclid avenues on the west and east. There is not much in the way of open space in the area and the canyons are cut off from Teralta East by those same surface roads. Nevertheless, a coyote was recently spotted in Fairmount Village. My little section of 45th street, in fact my house, is home to opossums and skunks and a raccoon has even passed through.
The opossums have been around the longest. They seem to have adapted easily to urban living. During the early years here, they feasted upon the snails and slugs that abounded in the yard. After wiping out all of the snails and slugs, they came to rely more and more upon the cat food which we set out for the abandoned outdoor cats that have also taken up residence with us. It is an understatement to say that a mature opossum is not exactly the classical beauty of the wild kingdom. There’s the rat like tail, the scroungy fur and the close set eyes and long narrow face that fall woefully short on the intelligence and cuteness scale. [Read more…]