Many of us have seen Melbourne groundhogs in movies or televisions shows, and these animals can be quite
cute. That does not mean you want one under your porch or in your shed. The question becomes how
do you know if one is there or not? That is a good question because the signs are not always obvious.
First of all, understand that these are animals that are not destructive like a bat, skunk, or
chipmunk. While they are not nuisance free, they do not create the same kinds of issues that you
find with some other wild Florida animals that would take up residence in or around your home.
If you are concerned that a Florida groundhog may have taken up residence under your porch or shed, there are some ways to tell. The first thing to do is to look for holes where it looks like an animal has created an entryway under the structure. A groundhog must dig a hole to get under these structures, and these should be quite obvious to you. There should also not be just one. Out of a fear of being attacked by a predator, a groundhog will usually create at least four or five spots to use as emergency exits. If you have found one, you should know you have a Melbourne groundhog if you find several other ones. Take a look around the structure to see if you find additional holes.
Also, do not limit your search to just right around the structure. Groundhogs are incredible diggers, and they will usually dig a series of tunnels away from the main den that they have burrowed out. Look for exit holes within 10 or 12 feet of the home as well. It is quite likely that the animal has dug out some exits further away from your Melbourne house or shed.
The other thing to look for is holes that have been dug in areas that would attract the Melbourne groundhog. For example, if you have a garden, it is likely that the rodent will try to get into the garden to get the fruits and vegetables that you have presented. Look to see if a hole has been dug that leads into the garden. If it is eating your crops, you should be able to see this as well. These are not animals that take all the food with them and they are not clean in anyway either. This is not great Florida groundhog table manners. They will make a mess of the foods that they are eating and you should be able to see a clear sign that an animal has made its way into your garden to get a snack. It should be apparent.
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