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Wayward wanderers

Opossum Shrew Skunk Woodchuck
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What they look like
Raccoons, skunks, opossums, moles woodchuck (groundhog), weasel, rabbits, foxes, and shrews—all can be a nuisance in your yard.

Where they live
Most of the time they stay away, but come to your yard when the pickin’s are good. From time to time one will set up shop too close for comfort—in a crawlspace, wall void, garage, under a porch, or underground in your yard.

What they do

Although some varmints carry disease—like rabies—the main concern is with their eating habits. Burrowing to find grubs can tear up your lawn, grazing on plants can wipe out your veggies, and getting into the trash can make for lawn ornaments you don’t want.

How to deal with wayward wanderers

If you want them gone, call a wildlife control operator. These professionals are best equipped to remove the perpetrator legally and humanely. Once it’s gone, see what you can do to prevent more from coming in. Changing trash storage and composting practices, planting things varmints don’t like to eat, and excluding them with lattice, fencing, and wire mesh all help keep them in the wild.

Learn more

Beasts Begone, A Practitioner's Guide to IPM in Buildings

Contact your local Cornell Cooperative Extension office.

... and search our database of online publications.