J.B. Pritzker, Governor |

Solve a Wildlife Problem

Wildlife Burrows

Several wildlife species will burrow under buildings, porches, or decks. Large burrow holes (four inches or more in diameter) are typically made or used by skunks or foxes. Coyotes, badgers, and woodchucks (also known as groundhogs) also dig and use burrows, but the burrow hole tends to be larger (10 to 14 inches in diameter). Muskrat, mink, and weasel burrows tend to be near water.

Photo: Laura Kammin
Large amount of soil excavated at the woodchuck or "groundhog" burrow entrance.
Notice the large amount of soil excavated at this woodchuck burrow entrance.

Smaller burrows (three inches or less in diameter) are usually made by chipmunks, thirteen-lined ground squirrels, voles, crayfish, or snakes. Small holes outside the home near foundations or under sidewalks are often used by chipmunks. Thirteen-lined ground squirrels make multiple burrow entrances and prefer areas of short grass. Crayfish holes will be found near water and look like small tubes of mud with a hole in the middle.

Photo: Willowbrook Wildlife Center
Thirteen-lined ground squirrel burrow holes will be about 2 inches wide. There will be multiple holes distributed throughout the area.
Burrow holes made by thirteen-lined ground squirrels will be about 2 inches wide. There will be multiple holes distributed throughout the area.

If you have seen the animal at its burrow and know which species it is, the Wildlife Identification pages for mammals provide wildlife damage prevention and control methods for each species. If you aren’t sure what species is using the burrow, the Burrows & Dens pages provide photos to assist in identification.

IDNR Monitoring Suspected Outbreaks of Avian Influenza During Fall Waterfowl Migration More...
This is default text for notification bar