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Groundhogs are burrowing mammals that can cause trouble for your property

If you’ve noticed damage to your garden or tunnels around your home, you may need pest control serving Ellicott City to remove groundhogs or other pests. Groundhogs are burrowing mammals that can cause trouble for your property if not removed.

Understanding Groundhogs

Also referred to as woodchucks, groundhogs are rodents that are closely related to squirrels. Because of their habit of digging holes and feeding on crops, groundhogs are typically classified as a pest species. They sometimes take up residence in burrows near a home’s exterior or beneath a deck. They can reach 8 to 10 pounds in adulthood, and female groundhogs give birth in the spring to a single litter of 2 to 9 young. Groundhogs can live in a wide variety of environments and can be found all over North America. These rodents build elaborate homes that can range from 2 to 20 meters in overall length. Their burrows often feature multiple exits and separate chambers for hibernating and defecating.

Recognizing Groundhogs

While their tunnels can be impressive, they are often a headache for homeowners. When stepped on, they can cause injuries for people and pets, and if beneath a deck or house, they can cause problems for the structure’s foundation. Additionally, groundhogs are agricultural pests that enjoy feeding on crops and gardens. You can recognize a groundhog infestation by their large mounds and burrows, as well as the damage that they do to plants in the warmer months. You might also identify their distinctive communication sounds that can include barks, whistles, clicks, and squeals.

Removing Groundhogs

Before attempting to deal with your groundhog problem, check your local wildlife removal laws. You can discourage groundhogs from entering your gardens or yards using fencing at least 3 feet high. Disrupting their burrows and removing their sources of food may also reduce their activity on your property. Ultimately, the most effective way to deal with an unwanted groundhog around your home is to catch it with a baited trap and remove it from the area. Many animal control and pest management companies offer groundhog removal services.