Ground Hog, Woodchuck Removal and Trapping in New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts & Vermont
Woodchucks are some of the best excavators around, they can dig up to 5 feet a day, they have multiple entrances and cause very costly problems. A single woodchuck can eat thousands of dollars worth of ornamental plants in a very short period of time. They will clean out a vegetable garden quicker than you can pick them. The most troublesome thing about the woodchuck cannot even be noticed right away. Their tunnels can collapse driveways, pools and even undermine foundations. One den was big enough to stand up inside when the ground collapsed. They are most active early in the day and in late afternoon and early evening, the rest of the day they spend digging. On one tunnel in the middle of the city we popped a green smoke grenade and blew it into the hole and the smoke came up almost a quarter of a mile away.
The female woodchuck will have 1 litter a year and up to 10 baby woodchuck but that is rare. the litter size is around 6. When they are just starting to come out of the den with the mother woodchuck they will walk around nose to butt, looking like a little brown train. Many people have tried to plug up the entrance(s) of the woodchuck tunnel only to find that they are dug out again soon after.
The only sure fire method for solving woodchuck problems is to trap them out and take them away.
We offer humane animal removal on all of our animal removal services. We provide woodchuck removal and woodchuck trap devices to trap woodchucks.
Groundhogs Under the Porch
Plenty of groundhogs make their homes under people’s porches, which can lead to plenty of problems down the road. That’s because groundhogs move a lot of dirt when building their burrows, and the lack of dirt weakens your home’s structural integrity.
Watch the Groundhogs
The first thing to do is to watch the groundhogs and figure out where they live, where they frequently go to, and what they do. This will give you crucial details that will help you get rid of them.
Seal off the Entries
After finding out where they live, you should quickly seal up all the entries save one. This gives them a way out, which prevents them from making new entries.
Set a Trap
At this point, you should set a trap in front of the last entry. Because all the other pathways are blocked, they’ll have no choice but to take this one. At which point they’ll be caught by your trap. Just make sure to hide the trap with leaves or anything else you can find.
While there are a variety of traps that can be used for the job, the live trap is one of the best.
Getting Rid of the Groundhogs
If you used a lethal trap, you’ll want to safely dispose of the body. If you caught the groundhog with a live trap but don’t want to relocate it, you can consider shooting it. Otherwise, if you want to relocate it, you should carefully take the groundhog at least five miles away from your home to prevent it from finding its way back. After this, you can seal up the last entry.
Always make sure to wear gloves when handling the groundhogs, as this will prevent you from contracting any diseases.
Make sure the burrow is clear of any groundhog pups. If it isn’t, you should remove them by hand.
Call your local authorities before relocating the animal or deciding to purchase a trap, as what is legal may differ between states.
Groundhogs in the Garden
Getting rid of a groundhog in your garden is going to be a much easier task. First, keep an eye on them to learn their behaviors. Then place a trap near their burrow and camouflage it. Be sure to use fruits or vegetables as bait, especially cantaloupe. With that done, you can step back and wait for them to be caught. At the end of this, you can get rid of them by making sure they’re dead before disposing of the body or simply relocating them.
There are a few things you can do to make the groundhogs leave without having to trap them. These include using hot sauce near their burrows to irritate them, using something with a strong scent like garlic or lavender, planting herbs like mint, thyme, sage, and lemon balm, or getting a cat or dog to scare them off.
After you get rid of the groundhogs, you’re going to want to make sure they can’t get back into your home. You can do this by building a fence that goes two to three feet underground and is just as high above the ground. This prevents them from digging under it or climbing over it.
Of course, why go through all the trouble when you could just call a professional to deal with all of it? They know all the little quirks of groundhog removal and will get rid of the pests in no time.
How to Keep Groundhogs Away
Groundhogs – also referred to as woodchucks or whistle pigs – are best known for their burrowing capabilities. They make underground interconnected tunnels and rooms with multiple entrances.
As you can imagine, these holes disfigure your entire landscape. What’s more, they weaken the structural integrity of the soil, which may weaken the foundation of your house, and even cause injury to pets. Visit groundtrapping.com to learn more about groundhog trapping.
As herbivores, groundhogs are notorious for the havoc they cause in gardens. They will consume greens (like lettuce and dandelions), carrots, and fruits. But that’s not all. Their borrowing will also negatively impact underground root systems.
Even worse, groundhogs are carriers of several zoonotic diseases like rabies and tularemia. That’s why it’s best to avoid direct contact with them.
For all of these reasons, no one wants groundhogs on their property. But a simple “Groundhogs, stay clear!” a sign won’t do the trick. So, how exactly do you keep these nuisance critters away?
Let’s dive right into some effective tactics for keeping them at bay.
- Eliminate Attractants
If you don’t want groundhogs in your yard, then it stands to reason that you eliminate what can potentially attract them. In clear terms, this means eliminating potential food and shelter. Here are some things to bear in mind:
- Harvest your crops on time – especially melons, peas, and beans, which are some of the groundhogs’ favorite foods.
- Remove piles of debris, leaves, and rocks to remove hiding spots. Why? Groundhogs tend to burrow in areas with sufficient cover.
- Trim back plants that groundhogs eat.
- Fill borrows with gravel.
Eggs are said to keep away groundhogs in your New Hampshire garden. Here’s what to do. Take an egg and crack it over each burrow then cover the burrow with dirt. Repeat the process until all boroughs have been covered. In about two weeks, the groundhogs should have left. Note that this is a short-term solution that needs to be repeated when the groundhogs return.
- Castor oil
Castor oil is another repellent homeowners use to keep groundhogs at bay. To deter groundhogs using castor oil, mix 1/2 cup of castor oil with two cups of water. Put the mixture in a spray can and spray it in areas frequented by groundhogs. This recipe irritates the groundhog, and it is forced to leave.
The only drawback is that this recipe wears off with time. That’s why the mixture needs to be reapplied every two to three weeks or after heavy rainfall.
- Offensive Scents
Groundhogs hate certain scents. Why not take advantage of that? Here are some effective smell repellents you should explore:
- Garlic: Groundhogs hate the pungent scent of garlic. Make a paste from a couple of garlic cloves. Then apply the paste in their burrows and areas where you don’t want them.
- Lavender: For whatever strange reason, groundhogs find the scent of the lavender plant offensive. Hence, planting lavender in your garden can help keep them at bay.
- Pepper: From Cheyenne pepper to chili pepper to red pepper, groundhogs hate the scent of pepper. Sprinkling pepper around the burrows of groundhogs will send them packing. You can also make a mixture of 4 spoons of pepper and 2 cups of warm water to treat your entire lawn.
Remember, repellents wear off on time. Hence, they need to be consistently reapplied to maintain their effectiveness.
- Live Traps
Using live traps is a humane way to handle a groundhog infestation problem. Groundhogs love cantaloupes, so they are very effective bait.
Ensure that you wear gloves when handling the trap to avoid transferring human scent to it. The trap should be placed close to the entrance and camouflaged with leaves to give it a natural feel.
Trapping groundhogs is an art that requires expert knowledge. That’s why you should involve professional wildlife companies like New Hampshire Animal Damage Control.
This is an expensive option, but it is an effective long-term strategy for keeping groundhogs away. But before fencing, you need to first ensure there are no groundhogs in your yard.
A strong wire that’s no larger than 3×3 inches can be used. Ensure that the fence is about 3 to 4 feet above ground level, with an outward angle at the top of the fence. This makes it difficult for the groundhog to climb.
But that’s not all. The fence should also extend about 12 inches into the ground to prevent tunneling. Pro tip: Create an “L” shape underground to make tunneling under even more impossible.
New Hampshire Animal Damage Control can help you resolve your groundhog infestation problem for good.
How to Prevent Groundhogs From Your Garden
While at first glance, the groundhog may appear like a cute and cuddly furry little creature, the truth is this rodent can be quite destructive. And there’s nothing cute about a ruined garden. That’s why today we’re focusing on things you can do to prevent groundhogs from bothering your garden. We’ll be focusing on prevention rather than removal – that’s because if you’re struggling with a groundhog problem in your garden, it’s best to call professional help. Also visit groundhogtrapping.com to learn more about the techniques for keeping groundhogs away.
A wildlife removal company comes prepared with protective gear and an abundance of experience that’ll make removing the groundhog from your property swift and easy.
- Set up a fence.
One of the best ways to keep not only groundhogs, but a host of other wild animals off your property is to set up a fence. A fence will keep out groundhogs, as well as snakes, rodents, and pretty much anything in between. It’s a great way to protect your property, especially if you dig the fence into the ground a little deeper, so as to also ward off those skillful little diggers that are prone to come sniffing.
You don’t want to be in a position where a wild animal invasion on your property (and also the intense damage it entails) could’ve been easily prevented if you’d only had a fence, so fence up now.
- Scare them off.
While groundhogs can have an intensely destructive streak to them, in essence, they’re deeply shy and scary creatures. That means you can usually scare them off easily, and keep your property pest-free a little longer.
For this purpose, pinwheels can work particularly well, especially when you’re trying to protect an isolated area of your garden. When the wind blows, pinwheels spin, and the unusual rapid movement tricks animals into thinking there’s danger. So they avoid that spot. Smart, right?
Like many other nuisance animals (like raccoons or opossums), groundhogs also dislike loud noises. So you can also use a motion-activated noise deterrent, or even just bang some pots and pans together, to scare the rodents out of your garden.
- Attempt catch and release.
This goes a little past prevention – if you’re already looking at a groundhog living on your property, a good humane option is to catch and release it. In order to do this, you will need to set up a live trap along the groundhog’s natural path. Make sure you check on the trap regularly, so as not to leave the rodent trapped for too long at once.
Once the animal is safely trapped, use the live trap to relocate the groundhog and release it in a safe location, where it can’t bother you anymore.
- Use ammonia.
Thanks to its strong, pungent scent, ammonia is a big favorite in the world of pest and nuisance wildlife removal. Now, we’re not talking about quantities large enough to actually harm the groundhog, just to disgust it. Pouring ammonia into the opening of a groundhog’s burrow can often be enough to cause the groundhog to stop using the tunnel. Doing this to all existing tunnels on your property will mean that the scent is scattered enough to put the groundhog off your property for good.
- Get a pet.
Yes, it can really be as easy as that. Because the groundhog sees cats and dogs as predators, their mere presence in your yard may be enough to keep the large rodents at bay. Alternatively, you might try scattering dog and cat urine and hair around your yard, to indicate their presence, and obtain largely the same effect. Some specialty stores sell predator urine (like fox urine) specifically for this purpose.
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