How to Keep Groundhogs Away from Your Backyard

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In many areas of the United States, groundhogs, or woodchucks, are one of the more common nuisance animals. These burrowing creatures can create quite a mess in your yard, and can also eat plants and vegetables in many cases. Keeping these animals away is in your best interest. Continue reading to learn how to keep groundhogs away from your backyard.


What Problems Do Groundhogs Cause?

Virtually every major problem that groundhogs cause to your home and property comes back to their ability to burrow. This burrowing not only can ruin the appearance of an otherwise well-kept yard, but it also can cause damage. When groundhogs burrow, they often like to find a place next to a structure to tunnel by. This keeps them more safe than being out in the open. When they burrow next to homes, garages, and other structures, the burrows can weaken the structural integrity of the foundations, potentially causing an expensive failure.

Make the Yard Less Appealing

Groundhogs, like every other nuisance animal, prefer to live in a yard that has tons of shelter and some great hiding spots. If you get rid of both of these in your yard, the groundhog will be less likely to stay in your yard. Groundhogs love to be around areas that are very messy and filled with debris, as this allows them to blend in better and hide their burrows more easily. If you clean up any debris piles, wood piles, or fallen limbs, there are less places to hide for the groundhog. This is also a great way to allow you to find the burrow entrances more easily.

Get Rid of Food Sources

One other large reason that groundhogs prefer yards is if there is a significant amount of easy food supplies. Groundhogs eat all kinds of plants, but are especially fond of certain vegetables commonly grown in gardens. One way you can secure your garden is to place a fence, preferably thick chicken wire, around the perimeter to keep these critters out. By doing this, you cut off significant food appeal, hopefully keeping groundhogs off your property. In addition, you can try planting lavender around the perimeter of your garden, as groundhogs are absolutely repulsed by the scent of the plant.


While the efficacy of many different homemade and store-bought repellents is very hard to prove, many people swear by certain groundhog repellent brands and recipes. Epsom salt is one of the repellents that many people swear by, as most people sprinkle it around a groundhog’s burrow liberally. Some people have had great success with fox, coyote, or cat urine, as this can cause the groundhog to believe that a predator is around, making them anxious to escape to a new yard or property. Finally, homemade blends of cayenne pepper and water, garlic and water, and many other mixtures can be sprayed around the burrows to repel groundhogs.

Professional Groundhog Removal

If you decide that hiring a professional wildlife removal service to get rid of your groundhogs is the better option, you will be impressed with the results. Not only do wildlife removal companies focus on getting rid of the groundhogs, but they also help you prevent any future groundhogs from coming onto your property. In addition, having professionals remove groundhogs will keep you and your family safe from any diseases the critters are carrying. Visit to hire a professional wildlife removal company.

Do-It-Yourself Groundhog Removal

If you are still having trouble with groundhogs and the prevention steps have not worked, it may be time to take matters into your own hands. It is important to note that if you try to remove groundhogs on your own, you could be exposing yourself to the diseases groundhogs carry, some of which are serious. If, however, you still want to remove the groundhogs on your own, continue reading.

Groundhog removal is best done by using a humane cage trap that is filled with bait of some plant variety. Place the baited cage trap by the burrow of a groundhog and wait for it to be caught. Continue this process until you believe all of the groundhogs have been removed. Once you catch them, be sure to follow all local laws on wildlife release. Visit to learn more!

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