How Much Does Groundhog Removal Cost?

Average range: $130 - $270
Average Cost
(inspection, trap placement for single groundhog)

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Reviewed by Irene Pomares. Written by

Groundhogs are classified as a species of least concern on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. However, there are some areas where the groundhog population is so numerous that they are considered pests. They can wreak havoc on your yard, especially when they build their burrows there. Besides leaving large holes in your landscaping, their tunnels can lead to structural building damage.

The average cost of groundhog removal ranges from $130-$270, with the average homeowner spending around $200 on inspection, and trap placement for a single groundhog​.

Groundhog Control

Groundhog Removal Costs
National Average Cost$200
Average Range$130-$270
Minimum Cost$75
Maximum Cost$400

Groundhog Removal Cost by Project Range

Inspection and repellent application
Average Cost
Inspection, trap placement for single groundhog
Inspection, trap placement, single relocation, and yard cleanup

Groundhog Removal Cost by Method

There are two ways to get rid of groundhogs that most professionals rely on. These methods include exclusion strategies that deter groundhogs from coming onto your property, and trapping and relocating. There is a lethal groundhog trap that’s available for professional use but there are humane concerns with this type.

Groundhog Removal Cost

Groundhog Removal Cost

Groundhog Removal MethodCost
Lethal trap$150
Live trap and relocation$250

Groundhog Repellents

Groundhog repellents are products used by contractors who aim to exclude the pests from your yard without using live or lethal groundhog traps. Repellent chemicals should be used exclusively by a professional since the application process can pose a risk to human or pet health. Although there are groundhog poisons, most contractors try a non-toxic version to see if the pests can be excluded in a humane way. The repellents are sprayed on target areas within the yard, including on any vegetation that the groundhog has been eating and at the opening of the burrows around the property. Both granular solutions and liquid types are available. Treatments with repellents will cost around $75 for a one-time application by a professional, which will last up to four weeks.

Groundhog Traps

Groundhog traps are available to rid your yard of nuisance groundhogs. Your professional will present the advantages and disadvantages of each type.

Live groundhog traps are used for catch and release strategies. A groundhog trap lures the groundhog using a food source such as cut-up pieces of fruits or vegetables. The trap is set during the daytime and placed near burrows within the yard. Live groundhog traps have simple mechanics—once the groundhog has entered the cage, the entry point is shut and traps the live groundhog inside. The professional then takes the groundhog to another area away from your property. The average cost for live trap and removal for a single groundhog is $250.

A lethal groundhog trap is typically only an option if the animal has caused significant damage to your property. Each state has laws about whether you’re allowed to use a lethal trap. For instance, the Missouri Department of Conservation permits lethal groundhog traps in the event that the pest is causing damage to a property. A typical lethal trap is a body-gripping type that traps and kills the groundhog after it leaves a burrow. Lethal groundhog traps are slightly less expensive since the animal doesn’t need to be relocated, costing around $150.

Groundhog Pest Control Cost

Groundhog removal services should be requested from a wildlife control specialist. Most significantly, a wildlife control specialist knows what methodologies are permitted within your region. For instance, there may be local laws protecting groundhogs from being killed.

Wildlife control specialists are hired to remove groundhogs from a home. The price of groundhog removal services includes an initial inspection as well as a treatment plan and prevention plan. An hourly rate that you can expect to pay for pest removal services is between $30 and $40. Since most yards are only impacted by a single groundhog, the cost will be around $150 to $200.

Any type of extras could be included in the labor costs. For instance, you may need to pay $50 or more for travel if the exterminator charges $0.50 per mile outside of the company’s service area and you reside 100 miles away from the designated site. Also, any return visits by the pest control technician are subject to the hourly rate of around $30 to $40.

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Cost to Repair Groundhog Damage

Groundhogs are known to cause damage to both a house and yard by digging extensive systems of burrows around the property. Burrow systems can be found under both a yard and structures located on the lot. The following are specific types of damage that could lead you to contact a wildlife control specialist for assistance.

Groundhog Foundation Damage

If you find piles of dirt and holes around your home’s foundation, there’s a good chance the groundhog has burrowed in this area. The main issue with groundhog foundation damage is that it threatens the stability of your home. Foundation damage can be expensive to fix and repairs cost upwards of $4,000.

Groundhog Yard Damage

Groundhog yard damage can be incurred due to the food sources that the pest could be seeking out. If you have any type of vegetable, herb, or flower garden, the plants may be trampled or consumed by the rodents. Groundhogs are herbivores and will stick to eating any plants available to them within your gardens. Along with replacing the plants, you’ll need to pay the cost to put protective fencing around your garden. The cost can be around $200 for a six foot 1 garden fence.

Groundhog Damage to Lawn

Groundhog damage to lawn and garden areas is largely due to the burrows they create for their homes. These burrows can be very large and extend up to 20 feet wide and 6 feet deep. Once you have removed the groundhogs from the property, you have to pay to fill in any of the burrows that they have created with an estimated cost of $200 to $800 for soil and delivery. Final cost depends on how much fill dirt is needed to undo the damage from the burrows.

Groundhog Damage to House

Groundhogs chew through certain parts of a home to make their burrows. Systems most likely to be affected by groundhogs are electrical wires and irrigation system 2 parts. For an electrical system, you’ll have to hire an electrician to assess the damage and do any rewiring. Rewiring work can cost an average of $8,000 if extensive work is needed. For any irrigation system repairs, expect to pay upwards of $350.

All About Groundhogs

Groundhogs are also called woodchucks and whistle-pigs. Groundhogs are hibernating animals that are only active during the warmer months. For the winter season, groundhogs remain in hibernation for up to three months. When active, they will fatten up by foraging as often as possible. Groundhogs can eat up to a pound of vegetables in a single sitting. They grow as long as 20 inches as an adult and weigh a maximum of 13 pounds. In the wild, groundhogs live an average of three years, but can survive as long as six years. Groundhogs are mostly solitary creatures, but do breed during the spring and have litters of up to six chucklings.

If you are wondering how to catch groundhog invaders on your property, the best idea is to call a professional. Contractors use a variety of methods to get rid of groundhogs. Normally, they first try with repellents. If repellents aren’t working, traps are usually the next line of defense. They will know how to trap a groundhog and will choose between live or lethal traps.

Groundhog Identification

Groundhog identification is an important part of the groundhog removal process. Wildlife specialists inspect your yard for signs of groundhogs before recommending any type of groundhog extermination procedures. Groundhog removal cost normally includes an inspection as long as you use the company’s services. The most obvious sign of groundhog problems is spotting the holes around your yard. These holes are their burrow entrances, and they are normally around 10 to 12 inches in diameter and are generally marked by a crescent-shaped mound of dirt. You may see signs of digging around sheds, decking, or porches. You may even spot paw prints around the loose dirt with four toes in the front and five in the rear. Groundhogs make a distinct high whistling sound that could alert you to their presence. Moles also dig holes, so spotting a live groundhog can also help with identification. With groundhogs, you’ll see thick fur on their back in different shades of brown. The groundhog measures less than two feet in length and has a stocky body with an average weight of around 10 pounds.

Groundhog in a Cold Environment

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Cost Factors to Remove Groundhogs

Groundhog removal cost factors depend on the services needed from the groundhog exterminator. For instance, if you’re using lethal groundhog traps, the pest control specialist should come back to the home and remove the trap and groundhog. Live groundhog traps also require the pest technician to return to the property and relocate the groundhog. Groundhog trapping falls into the range of $150 for lethal traps to $200 for live traps.

Any type of lawn work needed after groundhog removal is normally not done by a pest control specialist. Instead, enlist the assistance of a landscaper to perform any yard cleanup and fill in any holes. Pest control specialists are only used for groundhog extermination methods and groundhog removal. It’s important to fill in the holes quickly to avoid any falls on the property or damage to lawn equipment like a lawnmower.

Are Groundhogs Dangerous?

In the majority of cases, groundhogs are not a serious threat to humans. They are not known to attack and usually avoid human contact. Groundhog rabies is the largest concern when dealing with this pest. According to the Centers for Disease Control, groundhogs are one of the largest carriers of rabies. If you have pets in your home, you especially want to avoid rabies transmission. Rabid groundhogs can pass the disease onto pets when they come into contact with the rodent’s saliva. The disease can pass on to cats and dogs through a bite if the affected animal becomes aggressive. Humans can contract rabies from the rodent and develop flu-like symptoms. Rabies requires treatment since the disease can cause more serious symptoms such as extreme agitation and hallucinations.

Groundhogs are also dangerous if their burrows cause a fall risk in your yard. If a child or adult doesn’t notice the holes, they could fall and be subject to a sprain or break.

Groundhog on a Rock

Groundhog Removal vs Groundhog Extermination

A groundhog exterminator is different from a groundhog removal specialist. Groundhog removal services are normally preferred since this is the most humane option to get rid of the rodents. Moreover, your municipality may not allow for groundhog extermination methods to be used if the pest is not perceived as a threat. However, groundhog extermination may be the only option if a concern exists that the rodent has contracted rabies. Also, certain areas allow for extermination if the groundhog is causing damage to your yard and home.

Groundhog removal involves catching the groundhog alive and transporting the critter to another location. However, groundhog removal may be considered less efficient since it can often take more time to catch and release. Live relocation may also cost more than carcass removal. Plan to pay around $50 or more for live trapping, with an average of $200 or more, versus extermination with an average cost of $150.

How to Prevent Groundhogs

Preventing groundhogs from entering your property eliminates the need for trapping. After relocating a groundhog or repelling the pest from your yard, use these strategies to keep them away for good.

  • Fencing is a potential deterrent to keep groundhogs from coming back to your yard or home. However, groundhogs are exceptional diggers, so a fence may not always work when trying to keep the rodents out of your yard.
  • Lawn maintenance can also help with preventing groundhogs. Clean up any leaf and wood piles on a routine basis. Tall grass and tall weeds can attract groundhogs to a yard. Filling in any holes within a yard could also prevent future infestations of groundhogs.
  • There are also some natural scents that groundhogs hate, like castor oil, lavender or cayenne pepper. You can spread them around your property to help keep groundhogs away.
  • Dogs have also been known to stop groundhogs from coming into a yard since these little rodents might feel in danger when surrounded by bigger animals. Human presence is another known deterrent.
  • Scarecrows are another type of prevention method used against groundhogs. However, scarecrows must be moved around often to work effectively. Scarecrows cost around $40 to $50.

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Additional Considerations and Costs

  • Permits. Talk to your local wildlife control office to find out if you need a permit to remove a groundhog from your yard or exterminate the animal.
  • DIY. Groundhog removal is not effective when done on your own since the pests may not respond to store-bought repellents. The rodent could also be rapid and pose a safety risk.
  • Time of year. Spring and summer are the ideal times to get rid of groundhogs since they are more active. Groundhogs hibernate during the winter, and their hibernation time varies depending on their location too.
  • Legal issues. Each state will have its own rules about getting rid of groundhogs. Check your state’s department of wildlife websites to find out the legalities of dealing with groundhogs or woodchucks.
  • Ultrasonic groundhog repellents. Ultrasonic groundhog repellent is another removal option. The way that the ultrasonic groundhog repellent works is that an audio sound is emitted to naturally drive the pest away from your yard. However, the groundhog may choose to ignore the repellent if the pest has a reliable food source and has already created burrows within the yard. Groundhog ultrasonic devices cost upwards of $90-$150​​.


  • Is it bad to have a groundhog in your yard?

Groundhogs are destructive pests and should be removed before they cause significant damage to your yard. Once they create burrows and have a reliable food source, they remain in place.

  • How much does it cost to get rid of a groundhog?

The cost to remove a groundhog will be an average of $200.

  • What is a natural way to get rid of groundhogs?

Natural methods to get rid of groundhogs include placing certain substances around the yard such as chili powder and talcum powder. These methods are inconsistent. Scarecrows can occasionally prove effective.

  • What will keep groundhogs away?

Fencing and a well-maintained yard are the best way to keep groundhogs away from your property.

  • What smells do groundhogs hate?

Groundhogs dislike the scent of certain herbs and plants, such as lavender, garlic, and cayenne pepper.

  • What poison will kill groundhogs?

Poisons used on other rodents like rats will kill groundhogs. These chemicals need to include strychnine. Keep in mind that these chemicals are also very dangerous to household pets and children; it may also be illegal to kill groundhogs in your state.

  • Do groundhogs attack humans?

Groundhogs rarely attack humans and usually avoid all human contact, but if they do approach you, be aware of rabies transmission.

  • Can a groundhog kill a dog?

Groundhogs will not kill a dog, but can infect the pet with rabies if it is a carrier.


Remodeling Terms Cheat Sheet

Definitions in laymen's terms, cost considerations, pictures and things you need to know.
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glossary term picture Footing 1 Foot: A support for the foundation of a house that also helps prevent settling. It is typically made of concrete reinforced with rebar, but can also be made of masonry or brick. It is usually built under a heavier part of the house like a wall or column, to distribute the weight of the house over a larger area.
glossary term picture Sprinkler System 2 Irrigation system: Set of equipment used to irrigate lawns

Cost to remove groundhogs varies greatly by region (and even by zip code). To get free estimates from local contractors, please indicate yours.

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Groundhog in a Cold Environment
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