Woodchucks (Marmota Monax) or Groundhogs
Woodchucks are herbivorous mammals weighing 6 to 9 pounds and are generally 16 to 26 inches long. They are brown in color with short legs and thick curved claws and two large incisors. They prefer agricultural crops and berries. They are frequent visitors to backyard gardens.
Woodchucks have been known to create dens with anywhere from 2 to 5 entrances. Their burrows can be anywhere from 20 inches to 3 feet deep and as wide as 14 inches. The burrows are used for nesting, sleeping and hibernating.
Woodchuck pairs hibernate from October to March or April with the male leaving the burrow prior to birthing. Females normally give birth to two to six young in April or May. The pair re-unite once the young are able to leave the den and raise their litter together until August when they separate.
The suburban woodchuck’s favorite burrows can be found under decks, masonry steps and near basement exterior walls, which can undermine both the deck and masonry around the home.