East Texas couple saves 7 baby opossums

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - By Bob Hallmark - bio | email
Posted by Ellen Krafve - bio | email

LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - They might be pests to many East Texans, but one couple just could not leave them behind. Wednesday morning, a Longview couple came upon seven baby opossums, orphaned from a car accident. The seven hairy new arrivals at the Doctors Nutrition Clinic had everyone talking.

"As any mother who's had babies, you just want to take care of them because you know the mother can't so you want to help out," said Janet Lewis, who saved the baby opossums.

Dr. Stephen Lewis and his wife Janet spotted a road kill on the way to work and rescued the babies from the roadside.

"My wife says, 'Oh, stop! You've got to rescue them,'" said Dr. Lewis. "And, I was like, 'Well, I was going to anyway.'"

They have been nicknamed the seven dwarves, and already Janet Lewis is becoming attached.

"We didn't have anywhere to go with them so I thought, 'We'll keep them warm and try to get some help,'" she said. "It was in the middle of the road so I knew cars would come by and none of them would be left so we had to save them if we could."

To leave the little ones would have meant certain death, but keeping them alive takes more than good intentions.

"It's a very admirable thing but we have to remember they are wild animals," said Dennis Smith, a Gregg County Ag Extension agent. "Chances for survival is very slim unless they're taken care of by an expert somebody that has lots of training lots of experience."

And, for now, these seven dwarves have someone who cares for them.

The couple has been in contact with the East Texas Gator Farm and Wildlife Refuge in Grand Saline about taking the opossums. In the meantime they will keep them at their home.

Copyright 2010 KLTV. All rights reserved.