Groundhog Control & Identification
Do you have groundhog problems in or around your property? Contact us today to remove groundhogs from your space quickly and humanely!
What is a Groundhog?
Groundhogs (aka woodchucks) are known as one of the largest members of the squirrel family (Sciuridae). They usually weigh less than 14 pounds and are about 25 inches long (including the tail). Their fur is yellow-ish brown to black in color. They have short legs and bushy tails.
Common Name: Groundhog; woodchuck
Groundhog Scientific Name: Marmota monax
Diet: What Do Groundhogs Eat?
Groundhogs eat plants such as grass, ferns, leaves from bushes, and fruit. If they awake out of hibernation before new plant growth, they will eat bark and small branches. They will also occasionally eat insects, eggs, young birds, beans, peas, carrot tops, alfalfa, and soybeans. An adult groundhog can consume over a pound of vegetation each day.
- Adult body length (without tail): 16 to 22 inches
- Adult body weight: 5 to 13 pounds
- Gestation period: 31 to 32 days
- Litters per year: 1
- Litter size: 2 to 7 young (average 4)
- Breeding season: March and early April
- Birthing season: April through May
- Age at which young are weaned: 6 weeks
- Activity period: Daytime; especially sunrise to mid-morning and late afternoon until dark
- Range: 40 to 160 acres
- Primary foods: Vegetables, legumes, grasses and fruits
Groundhog Habitat and Breeding
Groundhogs are found throughout the Midwest in a variety of habitats. They prefer meadows, pastures, crop fields, and yards that are close to woods. They are especially common in brushy or weedy areas along fence rows.
Groundhogs hibernate throughout the winter in underground burrows. Winter burrows are usually in wooded areas and summer burrows are found near grassy agricultural fields where food is available. It isn’t unusual to find a groundhog digging under a shed or under a porch to create burrows.
Groundhogs commonly have more than one summer burrow, each having multiple entrances.
Mating season for groundhogs is late February or March; then, four to five young are born in April or May. A groundhog will give birth to only one litter per year. The young will start to find their own territory when they are just a few months old.
Groundhog Issues: What Kind of Damage Do Groundhogs Cause?
Destruction of Gardens
Groundhogs commonly invade cropland and vegetable gardens, eating or destroying vegetables and succulent landscape plants.
Damage to Vehicles
They’re also known to enter engine compartments of parked vehicles and gnaw on various rubber or plastic engine components and electrical wiring.
Damage to Fields and Yards
Groundhogs excavate large, unsightly burrows in fields, golf courses, cemeteries, lawns, and landscaping beds. This leaves mounds of soil at the dig site. They often excavate burrows along and beneath home and building foundations. They also burrow into levees and dikes, causing damaging washouts.
Issues with Foundation
Occasionally, groundhogs completely undermine foundations of homes or barns. At Varment Guard, we offer removal of groundhogs that burrow under decks, dig under sheds, have den holes in landscaping, and more.
How to Get Rid of Groundhogs: Varment Guard
Varment Guard knows how to efficiently and humanely remove groundhogs from your property. To effectively take care of your groundhog problem, we offer:
1. Groundhog Exclusion
Buried wire is the best exclusion method for groundhogs that have or are trying to gain access under your porch, shed, sunroom, or elsewhere.
Groundhogs will dig beneath ordinary chain-link fences, but if extra wire is buried about 18 inches deep and curved outward at the bottom, it will normally restrict their movements.
2. Groundhog Trapping Services
Varment Guard technicians live-trap groundhogs using live-catch wire cage traps. Live traps are most effective if placed directly in their runways at the burrow or on foraging trails. Traps are baited with a variety of fruit And leafy vegetation scent. Varment Guard technicians live-trap groundhogs using 32″x 12″x 10″or similar size wire cage traps.
Keep in mind that it may take several days before an animal will become accustomed to and enter the trap. When only a few animals are involved, live-catch traps are a practical approach.
3. Groundhog Entry Problems & Damage Repair
After we remove the groundhogs, we provide a pest guard deck barrier for groundhog prevention. We also offer groundhog damage repair for your home or business.
Get Rid of Groundhogs Quickly and Safely
Varment Guard technicians know how to get rid of groundhogs and stop them from wreaking havoc on your property. We can quickly, efficiently, and safely trap and remove any critter! Ready to get started with efficient and humane wildlife control? Contact Varment Guard today to get and keep pesky wildlife away from your property!
Frequently Asked Questions:
Where Do Groundhogs Come From?
Groundhogs occupy north and eastern North America. They’re common in states east of Iowa and Missouri and north of Tennessee. They prefer open fields, prairies, and the edges of woodlands. Additionally, groundhogs prefer areas where they can dig quickly, easily, and without running into predators or competition. Learn more!
Why Do Groundhogs Wake Up in the Spring?
Groundhog mating season begins as soon as the animals wake up in spring time. Male groundhogs wake up, emerge, and immediately start looking for female burrows nearby. Spring mating season is one of the few times groundhogs will socialize. Learn more about groundhog behavior in the spring here!
Are Groundhogs Aggressive?
Groundhogs are aggressive wild animals and will defend themselves when they feel threatened. They can be tough to get rid of once they’re on your property. If you’ve got groundhogs on your property, get in touch with Varment Guard to resolve the problem quickly. We offer live traps for groundhogs so we can humanely remove them!
Woodchuck vs Groundhog: What’s the Difference?
There is no difference. Groundhogs and woodchucks are the same thing and you can use the terms interchangeably.
Are Groundhogs Bad For Your Lawn?
Yes. Groundhogs usually dig burrows in grassy areas and dig through gardens. Plus, they are extremely difficult to get rid of once they invade your property.
How to Trap Groundhogs
Do not attempt to trap groundhogs yourself. Groundhogs are aggressive and should be dealt with by a professional pest control expert. Trapping groundhogs can be tricky and sometimes dangerous. If you’re wondering how to trap groundhogs in a live trap, just call Varment Guard to get the job done!