By Josie 


January 9th, 2023

a single species

Instead, both are names of the same animal. In America, they are known as woodchucks and in other regions of the world they are called “groundhogs.”

You wouldn't be the first one to think that groundhogs and woodchucks are two spearate species.

Let's get to know this lil' guy and his cousins!

Native Americans formerly referred to woodchucks as “wuchak.”

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History of their name

English settlers probably created the name “woodchuck” by attempting to utilize that word.

But it doesn't stop at groundhogs and woodchucks!

They're also nicknamed:

Land Beavers

whistling beavers

They create burrow systems that can stretch over 50-100 feet, usually 6 feet underground.

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Chambers are typically 15 inches in diameter, connected via 4-6 inches-wide pathways.

They have one burrow in the forests for the wintertime and one in grassy regions for the summer.

Woodchucks are solitary, diurnal mammals that are active during the day.

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They typically eat in the mornings and late afternoons during the summer, napping or sunbathing most of the day.

Its legs are short and strong, vital for their digging ventures.

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They have massive front upper teeth that they wear away by gnawing to prevent them from reaching unsustainable lengths.

When mature they measure 16 and 20 inches, weigh between 5 and 10 pounds, and have a tail of 4-7 inches.

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These creatures are primarily vegetarians and eat a wide range of grasses, chickweeds, clover, plantains, and many flowers.

Woodchucks’ metabolism slows in the summer, so even though they consume less food, they can gain up to 100% more weight

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Mating Habits

Males come out of hibernation earlier than females to build dominant hierarchies, establish territories, and look for mates.

Other than for mating purposes, female and male woodchucks don’t engage with one another.

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The usual gestation period for a groundhog female is 30 to 33 days.

At around two months old, puppies quickly develop their independence and separate from their mothers.

The majority of litters contain 3-5 pups.

Now you know these burrowing rodents!

Swipe up to get to know them even better!