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How Much Do You Really Know About Groundhogs In Winston-Salem?

November 16, 2021

Ground hog looking for food in a Winston-Salem Yard

Groundhogs seem to be animals that everyone is familiar with, but, in reality, people really don’t know a lot about them. For instance, they are actually a member of the squirrel family, which means they are rodents. Like any rodents, groundhogs can bring danger and destruction to a  property, but learning the facts can help you avoid groundhog activity on your Winston-Salem property altogether.

Not A Friendly Guest

While groundhogs, also known as woodchucks, may seem like just another innocent form of wildlife on your property with their brown, fuzzy bodies and slow, meandering movements, they are not animals you want to entertain. They might only be twenty inches long at the most, but they have very sharp claws for digging and front incisor teeth that can chew through a variety of materials on your property and underneath your home.

Groundhogs will typically burrow in your yard after making a hole in the ground or under a tree. Who wants unsightly holes all over the yard? They not only look bad, but they also can be a tripping hazard for anyone walking or playing in the yard.

Although they’re more common in the yard, they have been known to get underneath homes as well. Once they gain access to your crawlspace through some sort of vent or opening that they can expand with their sharp teeth, they can do damage to the wooden structures of the foundation, the electrical wiring, pipes, and AC ducts as well.

Groundhogs can pose a threat to your health as well. They can be very aggressive, especially when protecting their young. Any contact with a groundhog can put you at risk of a rabies infection, and they are also known carriers of fleas and ticks. If they introduce fleas or ticks onto your property, then you, your pets, and your children will be at a greater risk of disease incursion.

Proper Prevention Plans

Considering the risk factors, groundhog prevention needs to be a high priority on your Winston-Salem property. Let’s focus on preventing them from getting under your house, first. Limit their easy access points into the foundation, especially any areas that lead to the crawlspace. Groundhogs are almost always looking for a great place to burrow, and below your house becomes a very attractive spot if they can gain access. Begin by sealing off any uncovered vents, replacing rotted wood, and addressing any cracks and crevices with caulking or new wooden pieces.

In the yard, there are a few things you can do to limit their attraction to the property. Since they’re always looking to burrow, groundhogs are attracted to moist, softened ground. Maintaining your lawn can help the moisture distribute evenly so that your soil doesn’t attract groundhogs. Lawn maintenance will also limit the amount of clutter that builds up: piles of leaves, sticks, lawn ornaments, children’s toys, or random junk. Clutter not only prohibits moisture from distributing evenly, but it also provides plenty of hiding spots for groundhogs and other yard-invaders.

Unfortunately, plenty of homeowners take these steps and still wind up with groundhog problems. If you see one on your property, don’t forget about the health risks of coming into contact with groundhogs. Professional help is not only the safest method of getting rid of groundhogs, it’s also the most effective way to keep them off of your property for good. Call Ray’s Pest Control today for the best pest prevention and eradication services in the area.

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