Groundhogs, also known as woodchucks, are one of the most commonly encountered wild animals in North America. They make their homes in gardens and backyards, often becoming friendly with their human neighbors. But aside from their endearing characteristic of popping their head out of the ground every February 2nd to predict the weather, what do these amazing animals like to eat? Knowing what groundhogs eat can help you better understand their behavior and create a more harmonious relationship between them and us. This blog post will provide you with an overview of the diet of groundhogs, including what they eat in the wild and what you can feed them if you have them on your property.
1. Green plants
Although groundhogs are omnivores, they mostly feed on green plants. They prefer to eat a variety of grasses, clover, alfalfa, and other leafy greens. They may also eat fruits, nuts, mushrooms, and insects when they can find them. Groundhogs are especially fond of dandelions, which they will dig up to eat the roots and leaves. When they can find it, they may also eat garden produce such as carrots, peas, corn, and beans.
Groundhogs are curious creatures that enjoy snacking on a wide variety of food sources. Fruits are a particularly tasty treat for groundhogs and they can be found in many areas. Groundhogs love to snack on apples, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, and cherries. They also enjoy munching on grapes, pears, and peaches. Groundhogs can also find wild fruits that grow in the forest, such as mulberries and huckleberries. Fruits provide a great source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber for groundhogs, so make sure to put out some for your pet groundhog.
3. Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds are an important part of a groundhog’s diet. Groundhogs will often eat acorns, hickory nuts, beech nuts, walnuts, and hazelnuts, as well as sunflower, pumpkin, and squash seeds. They also forage for different types of berries such as blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries. Peanuts and corn may also be eaten. When foraging for nuts and seeds, groundhogs will usually bury them for later consumption.
Groundhogs are omnivores, and they mainly feed on vegetation. However, they will also supplement their diets with insects, small invertebrates, and other small animals. Groundhogs have been known to eat certain types of spiders, grasshoppers, locusts, crickets, caterpillars, beetles, ants, and other insects found in or near their burrows. Insects are relatively low calorie and high in protein, making them a good snack for groundhogs.
5. Small animals and eggs
Groundhogs are omnivorous animals and will eat a variety of food items, including small animals and eggs. These small animals can include birds, mice, voles, and insects. Groundhogs will also eat eggs, both wild bird eggs and chicken eggs, if they are available. Groundhogs don’t typically eat eggs in large quantities, but they may eat several eggs in a single sitting. Eggs provide a good source of protein and other essential nutrients for the groundhog and helps to sustain their energy levels.
In conclusion, groundhogs are herbivores and they primarily feed on plants and grasses. They also eat nuts, fruits, insects, and sometimes even small animals. Groundhogs can be found in gardens, fields, and other open spaces, and they will eat whatever is available in those areas. Knowing what groundhogs eat can help protect gardens and crops from damage due to their foraging.