Chipmunks might be cute little animals, but they are most gardeners and homeowners’ nightmare: they can damage your plants, seeds, and bulbs, but not only. Indeed, while the damage they cause is often limited to the area of your garden, they can go further with their destruction. Because chipmunks are always in the run to find a house that will shelter them from predators and provide them with the comfort they need to survive and thrive, they might come as far as damaging your property.
If you had a close encounter with these little animals, you are probably familiar with their digging habits. But can chipmunks damage house foundations? And if yes, what can you do to prevent severe damage to your property? Keep reading to find out.
Can Chipmunks Damage House Foundation?: Chipmunks and Burrows
Chipmunks dig shallow burrows for safety and resting during the day and deeper and more complex ones for food storage, nesting, and traveling.
Without intervention, these animals’ burrowing activity can go out of hand and become a problem for your house structure. Their digging can lose soil beneath your property and weaken the integrity of its structure. In the worst cases, you may even notice water getting into your house. Such a level of destruction is the sign of a well-established colony of chipmunks on your property. However harsh it may sound, this might be the result of having allowed these animals to live in your yard for too long.
Luckily, it is not as common as you might think. Usually, only two to four chipmunks will come to live in a yard. Of course, if the conditions are favorable for their survival (lots of food, no predators, available water, and enough space for digging), your garden might attract a denser population. The good news is that there are plenty of “humane methods” to take care of this problem.
Signs of Activity
Identifying chipmunks’ burrows is not as simple as it sounds, but it is crucial for taking the right actions to move them from your property. If you notice something off with your gardens, such as uprooted plants, unusual activities, small diggings, or misplaced garbage, you will have to take some action to limit damages.
Locating the entrance of their diggings might be challenging because chipmunks pay care not to leave signs of their presence that may attract predators. You can monitor chipmunks’ activity and discover their route to identify their entrance and exit points. Alternatively, look for signs of loose soil around your garden.
Can Chipmunks Damage House Foundation?: Prevention
To prevent dealing with problems that might cause you more than a headache, it might be a good idea to guard your garden. You can install a fence and cover your bulbs and seeds with a hardware cloth.
Plus, if you have bird feeders, you will have to move them away from your property. Chipmunks love seeds: bird feeders will only attract them to your garden. Eliminate their favorite food to discourage chipmunks from being attracted to your yard. Do the same with stacks of wood, rock piles, and anything else in your yard that can offer protection to these little animals or food in the form of insects and mushrooms.
You can even try with repellents or traps, but the most effective way of ensuring these cute animals won’t destroy your house is to encourage them to move away from your property.