Woodchuck Trapping in Wilton, CT. This Woodchuck became a problem to the homeowners when it continuously would eat their vegetable garden and flower bulbs. Every year the homeowners would have what they believed the same woodchuck. They would try and trap the woodchuck themselves and were extremely unsuccessful.
Woodchucks, also commonly called Groundhogs, are a type of marmot common in Connecticut. They have red-brown to black-brown fur with white hairs mixed in. Their bodies are chunky and they have a bushy, flattish tail 3 to 6 inches long. They have the prominent incisors common to rodents. The claws on their feet are long and curved, adapted for digging. They weigh 4 to 14 lbs. They are adaptable and will live in habitats from meadows to open woods. They are active only during the warm months and hibernate through the winter. Here hibernation usually begins in October. They are active during the day when not hibernating.
Woodchucks dig burrows several feet deep and up to 30 feet long, and they live there alone. Fresh dirt at the entrance of a hole 8 to 12 inches in diameter usually indicates an active burrow as Woodchucks regularly clean out their dens. This fresh dirt is at the main entrance. Other escape exits will be dug from the inside. Burrows will have a nesting chamber and a separate chamber for excrement. A winter hibernation burrow is usually dug with the hibernation chamber placed below the frost line.
All the burrowing is actually beneficial. It aerates the soil, mixes in organic matter and moisture, and brings deeper soil to the surface to begin the weathering process that creates topsoil. The underground excrement fertilizes soil. Many other animals make use of abandoned woodchuck burrows for shelter.
Typical diet in the wild consists of green plants. Woodchucks are often seen in lawns or by roadsides eating plants like grass, clover and dandelions. They love your garden plants. Fencing to keep woodchucks from the garden should be 3 ft high and extend underground a foot or two to prevent them from burrowing underneath. Woodchucks can climb trees up to about 15 ft to look for food or escape danger. They can also swim if necessary.