If you have groundhogs, you need to stop them cold in their digging tracks. Otherwise, you’re looking at serious destruction.
A groundhog trap is a great way to get rid of groundhogs on your property … if you have the right trap and know how to use it.
This post will provide tips and insider knowledge so you’re successful at trapping groundhogs and ultimately protecting your property.
Before you Buy a Groundhog Trap
Before you buy a groundhog trap, you want to make sure it’s going to be effective and easy-to-use. Look for the following when selecting a groundhog trap:
- Spring-loaded door: this will result in safe and secure traps
- Rust-resistant wire mesh, reinforced with steel: this will mean a long life for your trap
- Small mesh openings: look for small mesh openings to prevent stolen bait or groundhogs from escaping
- Sensitive triggers: you want it to work quickly
- Smooth internal edges: this will ensure the trapped animal will not be injured
- Trigger rod located outside of the trap: when the trigger rod is outside, the captured animal can’t damage it
Groundhog traps can double as a raccoon trap since both animals are similar in size.
Before You Set Your Groundhog Trap
Have a plan in place for what you’re going to do with the animal once trapped. Find a good location to release it. Make sure your local/state laws allow for trapping and releasing of groundhogs.
Get your car ready for transport. Make sure you have plastic sheeting or box to place under the trap to protect your car. You’ll also want a cover for the trap, which will ensure the animal stays calm during transport.
Use the Best Bait, and Bait the Groundhog Trap Correctly
Cantaloupe is one of the most effective groundhog baits there is. In field tests, it outperforms other bait.
Use the cantaloupe to cover the trap in the juices, as bait inside the trap (both at the back and under the trigger plate) and to create a trail of juices from the entrance of the burrow to the trap.
Here’s how to use cantaloupe as groundhog trap bait:
- Cut the cantaloupe into chunks, about 2” x 2”
- Position trap about 3 feet from the burrow entrance
- Rub the trap, inside and out, with cantaloupe rind
- Make sure the trap has the cantaloupe juices all over it
- Set the trap
- Place a small plate of the cut cantaloupe on the inside back of the trap, after the trigger plate
- Place more cut cantaloupe under the trigger plate
- Rub the cantaloupe in the grass, creating a trail of juices from the trap to the entrance of the burrow
- Leave some cantaloupe at the burrow entrance
If you don’t catch a groundhog and the cantaloupe starts to rot, leave it. The smellier the cantaloupe is, the better bait it becomes. Though, chances are, you’ll probably catch a groundhog within 24 hours.