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Getting rid of a groundhog

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by stop drop & roll, Dec 29, 2008.

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  1. ansehnlich1

    ansehnlich1 Minister of Fire

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    uh, hogs normally have 2 and often 3 or more holes, sometimes as much as 30 or 40 feet apart, depends on how long they've been living in a particular area.

    so, close up all holes but the main one, take a big rock for each hole and shove it down in there, then pack it good on top with dirt, nice and tight.

    then, in the evening, in the remaining hole, get a "giant destroyer", tape it to the end of a 3 foot stick, light it, shove it as deep as possible in the remaining hole, and close that hole up good with dirt, stomp it good to pack it in.

    make sure you don't put out the incendiary device when filling the hole, i always shove the "giant" down into the hole as far as possible, then put a properly sized rock in first, then fill dirt on top, working quickly.

    careful when lighting the "giant destroyer" as it fires off pretty good, like a big sparkler :)

    see linky.....

    http://www.idealtruevalue.com/servlet/the-29876/Detail

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  2. stop drop & roll

    stop drop & roll New Member

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  3. Garry P

    Garry P New Member

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    I don't know about ground hogs, but we use moth balls to get rid of moles. Just spread them around the yard. They head for the neighbors yard within a day or two of putting the moth balls out.
  4. jdemaris

    jdemaris New Member

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    I find it hard to believe any self-respecting woodchuck is going to be scared off by kitty-litter in one of his/hers many holes. A common "trick" used by septic-tank truck drivers - and people with big motorhomes - is to stick the septic-waste drain-hose down a chuck hole and let it rip. I've seen chucks "abandon ship" and come out one of their other holes - but not leave for good. One chuck will often have 10, 20, maybe 30 holes - built around many of his/hers favorite places. When the weather is nice - what else do they have to do - but eat and dig holes?

    In my area, we have chucks all over the place. Most farmers are militant about killing them since they fill the fields with holes that tractor-wheels get caught in.
    Seems for every one that gets killed, two more take its place.

    I've seen an awful lot of attempted remedies. The now-defunct Agway used to sell woodchuck smoke-bombs. You lit them and threw them down the holes. Looked good, but didn't accomplish much.

    Long-range woodchuck hunting is a big summer sport here. I guess - because there's nothing else around in the summer that's legal to blow to pieces. I used to do it years back - but now can't stand to kill an animal just for target practice. Thus the live-trapping. Last year - I got pretty frustrated when many acres of our sweet corn and potatos were being detroyed by turkeys, coon, and deer. With the woodchucks - they go after the brocoli and pumpkin vines. The NY Dept. of Conservation gave me a handul of "landowner nuisance tags" to shoot whatever I wanted - i.e. any deer, turkey, or whatever was fair game with my rifle. Ended up, I didn't have the heart for it. So yeah, I've gotten soft over the years - considering I used to be a fur trapper 30-40 years ago.
  5. zendiagrams

    zendiagrams New Member

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    'Mostly herbivorous, groundhogs primarily eat wild grasses and other vegetation, and berries and agricultural crops when available.[2] Groundhogs also eat grubs, grasshoppers, insects, snails and other small animals, but are not as omnivorous as many other sciurids.

    Though, it will not be the only thing you need to do, it does help.
  6. jdemaris

    jdemaris New Member

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    Many of the dairy farmers in my area of Otsego County are moving up to Lewis and Jefferson.
    Land by you is cheaper - at least for now. I've owed a 50 acre wood-lot for 20 years in the little town of Worth (doesn't even have it's own post office). Right on top of the Tug Hill Plateau. Seems lately, the snow-mobilers and ATVers outnumber the farmers.
  7. wiringlunatic

    wiringlunatic New Member

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    One thing I've heard and I'm pretty sure it would work is to dump lye crystals down their hole. These used to be used to make soap, but now they're sold as drain opener. DO NOT let the crystals touch your skin. The groundhog walks though the crystals, which starts to irritate it's paws. Like any animal, when something hurts, he licks it and promptly poisons himself for you. Professional exterminators use something called "tracking powder" for mice which does essentially the same thing. Not for the PETA members out there, but effective and you don't have to try to lure him to dry stale poison bait when there's fresh juicy vegetation nearby. Trapping wild animals is always difficult when there is a large amount of fresh food available and groundhogs have such a diverse diet that limiting food besides the bait (poison or in a trap) is difficult. I tend to believe that they enjoy rocks and dirt dumped in their holes, it's just a new challenge! (and it doesn't work) Just be sure if you try it that the lye is far enough down the hole to keep pets out of it.
  8. jdemaris

    jdemaris New Member

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    Two comments: One, is why make any animal suffer like that? If you need it gone, and have to kill it, at the least - put a bullet in its head. It's just plain a rotten thing to do to any living thing that feels pain.

    In regard to bait - we have a crop farm here so there's always all kinds of fresh food available for the chucks. That being said, broccoli seems to be their weakness - at least in my area. In the summer we have acres of sweet corn, squash, lettuce, carrots, sugar beets, peas, beans, potatoes, etc. - yet the chucks always come to the broccoli. This last summer, several chucks made burrows right in the middle of the potato field since they love the tops (so do the deer). But, even with that - they still came to the broccoli.
  9. wiringlunatic

    wiringlunatic New Member

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    [quote author="jdemaris" date="1230766775
    Two comments: One, is why make any animal suffer like that? If you need it gone, and have to kill it, at the least - put a bullet in its head. It's just plain a rotten thing to do to any living thing that feels pain.[/quote]

    I agree -- if possible. I'd prefer to use .22 myself. However, in many neighborhoods that is not an option. Trying to trap even mice when there is an alternate food source can be a challenge as many animals can smell that you have touched the bait. Also, the favorite foods of groundhogs are fresh. By the time your smell is off of it, it is dry and wilted -- not very attractive. As I said in my post, I've never personally done that, but as a last resort, it should work.
  10. kenny chaos

    kenny chaos Minister of Fire

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    Just don't see many chucks on the farm anymore thanks to the coyotes and good farm dogs.
  11. wiringlunatic

    wiringlunatic New Member

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    An even better solution. And automatic too.
  12. jdemaris

    jdemaris New Member

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    The chucks here must be better at reproducing fast. Many good farm dogs around, and if anything - too many coyotes. But - still no shortage of woodchucks. In the summer, I see them all over the roads where they've been squashed and the numbers are amazing. Just in road-kill alone it doesn't seem possible.

    When I lived in northern Vermont - you could spend an entire day hunting for chucks - and if you were lucky - you might see one or two. Here - I can see that many in ten minutes.

    My neighbor is a wildlife technician for NY Dept of Conservation. He goes around putting radio collars on the coyotes - to keeps tabs on them. Maybe those collars are intering with their huning sucesses?
  13. woodconvert

    woodconvert Minister of Fire

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    Check the rules first before live trapping/transporting. Here in Michigan it's illegal to trap them alive and move them and from what I hear, if you get caught the penalty is stiffer than you think.

    You can get a large live trap and a used .22 or .22mag on the cheap. Tis a solution. Oh, i've never looked up how many offspring they have but come spring i've always got a ginormous momma with 7 or 8 puffballs in tow. Luckily she keeps her distance.
  14. Cazimere

    Cazimere Member

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    Simply show the offending neighbor where the property lines are and ask that he stay on his own ground : )
  15. jdemaris

    jdemaris New Member

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    It's illegal here in New York also - but it's not something I'm going to worry about. Maybe if I had neighbors and lived in suburban area, I'd feel differently. Technically, we need a permit to move any live animals. We can kill many of them, but can't "take them alive." And, on top of that, you cannot get permits to move certain animals to certain areas - ever. Also cannot touch beaver dams except with permission from Encon - even when they are blocking the road on property I own. Some deer cannot be brought from the Northern zone to the soutern zone, or vice-versa. Same with wood, logs or firewood. Much of that also applies in Michigan. Trolls in the lower peninsula are not supposed to bring things up and across the Mac bridge to the UP, and vice-versa. Some deer and elk problems in Michigan too, but I haven't paid close attention. I have a home and some land near the "Elk Capital" of Michigan near Atlanta (north MI, lower P). I know t his year there's been a big stink about baiting bear and deer with sugar beets - not allowed and supposedly, will be enforced.

    If someone is living in a suburban area, it's probably illegal to shoot them too. Most firearm discharge laws require a minimum of 500 feet from a residence.

    So what are you going to do? Go forth with some common sense and do what needs to be done, when it needs to be done - or try to abide to every letter of every law? Can't answer that for others, but can easily do so for myself.
  16. woodconvert

    woodconvert Minister of Fire

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    Sounds like NY and Mi share many of the same laws. Moving wood is also a hefty penalty from what I've read. It used to be you couldn't transport ash/elm out of any quaranteened areas downstate...now you can't move anything out of a quaranteened area.
    Were it me i'd poke em' in the trap with a .22 or with a .22short (they are not loud)...with my luck if I moved one I'D be a a-hole that would get the fine.
  17. jdemaris

    jdemaris New Member

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    One funny little story. An older guy near me has his own small-engine repair shop. For many, many years - he's had the habit of pouring old gasoline down woodchuck holes. Not that he wants to get rid of the chucks - it's just convenient. Pour it "down the hole" instead of "on the grass" sort of thing. I'm talking small amounts - like maybe a pint of old gas from a chain saw or lawn mower. Last summer, someone witnessed the "crime" and called it in. He was on the front page of the newspaper. Got arrested, fined, and had to pay for an expensive toxic clean-up. So, I guess the woodchucks got the last laugh on that one.

    Funny irony is - not even 20 years ago - the town highway departments were dumping all their waste oil on the dirt roads to keep dust down. Now - it's a crime.

    Moral of that story is - if you're going to do it - do it when no one can see you.
  18. woodconvert

    woodconvert Minister of Fire

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    Tis the truth. Ats why I mentioned the .22shorts...just enough to dent vermin head (barely) yet not loud enough to make someone call the coppers. (another practice that's an option that I don't do but if you catch em' in the live trap you can take em' swimmin'...just saying, it's another option).
  19. ansehnlich1

    ansehnlich1 Minister of Fire

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    I shoot groundhog with my little .22 too. It's a bolt action with a cheap little scope on it, but it'll take care of business when necessary.

    I've also used the "little giant" with success. You know, in populated areas and residential settings it ain't always prudent to be firin' .45 .70's at varmints.

    To the OP, if you use just one of those little giant's, you can easy tell if ya got 'em, cuz they'll dig out if you didn't.

    Also, another may "dig back in". I've stuffed a hole more than once with those smokers, and always have had success.
  20. Dill

    Dill Feeling the Heat

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    Don't be the idoit who havaharts them to release them into some farmer's field. We really hate that. While we don't have many woodchucks left around here, due to the coyote boom. Those holes are a real problem. We had a wagon flip 10 years ago when the wheel hit a hole on a side hill.
    Shoot it. If you can't, go out and buy a rodent bomb. You block off the holes you can find then, chuck a lit one down the main hole. Have a shovel ready to block off everywhere else you see smoke coming out.
  21. stop drop & roll

    stop drop & roll New Member

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    Hey, thanks for all of the sugestions and stories. Going to head out to the hardware store. Happy New Year everybody!!!
  22. Dill

    Dill Feeling the Heat

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    Isn't the hog hibernating now?
  23. stop drop & roll

    stop drop & roll New Member

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    I have yet to see him(in my yard). The dirt mounds appeared aprox. four to six weeks ago with what appeared to be new digging as little as two weeks ago.
  24. kenny chaos

    kenny chaos Minister of Fire

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