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  • San Francisco Educational Article of the Month - How to Kill a Groundhog

How to Kill a Groundhog

When a groundhog takes up residence in your San Francisco garden or in any cavity under your California home, you need to take steps to make sure that the damage is controlled and drive it off your property as early as you can.

It is natural on your part to devise plans of getting rid of the California groundhog. Some people will instinctively try to kill the groundhog as their act of defense and security. This may be a natural reaction on several occasions but, in reality, it could become a frustrating and a difficult act.

Many people feel that the best way of getting rid of a groundhog is by using a kill trap which crushes its head. Lethal traps have become common and prevalent in the market. This has become a widely used way of killing a groundhog by many people. These traps are positioned at the burrow exits which are being used by a groundhog. Though this method is being adopted by several people, it is a cruel way of killing a groundhog as there is no certainty that it will die quickly and whether the trap blade will be swift and effective.

An alternative method to using lethal traps is poisoning the California groundhog. Though it is not difficult to sprinkle poison near the burrow entrances, there are various problems that face those people who are trying to poison and kill the groundhog. One of the major obstacles to poisoning is that it is tough to know which will be the best place to accurately place the poison so that other animals do not fall victims to the bait accidentally. Another hurdle is that when a San Francisco groundhog consumes the poison and dies within its burrow, it becomes extra difficult to locate its carcass and remove it. The odor from the carcass may also attract other pest rodents.

There are numerous kinds of rodent poisons that are available in the market and they may work in several ways. Yellow crystals as fly bait are a form of poison that kills groundhogs. Strychnine is another poison that is used by many people when they want to get rid of these San Francisco rodents. Strychnine functions by suffocating the groundhog. People have to understand that using poisonous substances to kill groundhogs will also affect their own health. Groundhogs may suffer from different reactions after they feed on the poisons and this is certainly not a humane way to take care of the groundhog problem.

There are few things that people have to consider before they start using poisons to kill the California groundhogs. First, it is a cruel and inhumane act. Secondly, poisons usually do not act instantly on the groundhogs. On many occasions, you will observe that these animals will not die instantly; instead, they may suffer from the ill effects of the toxic substances for many days on end. Before using the poison against them, you will have to clear the doubts on whether it is allowed and that it is legal in the place where you live. There are few local San Francisco laws concerning the removal of carcasses with regulations on which animals can be killed and how they have to be killed. This is mainly because many rodents are known to be carriers of dangerous diseases.

Selecting the right kind of poison for a groundhog is also difficult as rat poison may not work. It may not occur to you that your pets and animals that have not been targeted by the poison may fall victims to it instead of the California groundhogs. Finally, the process of cleaning up after the groundhogs have been poisoned would be time consuming and it may have an impact on your health and on that of your pets. You would need to sterilize the place thoroughly once you have cleaned up in order to avoid diseases from spreading.

Shooting a groundhog with an air gun is another way of killing it. This may not be so straightforward but many people in rural California regions try this out. It becomes an option for those people that have good skills in marksmanship. It becomes necessary that the California groundhog be shot in one attempt as it is likely to run away and hide for ages.

Despite these options of killing a California groundhog, there are several other alternatives that people should look at. Killing a groundhog is merely a temporary solution. It is very likely that killing a groundhog will not mean that eradication has been complete; other groundhogs will follow and make their homes in those very burrows. A permanent and a smarter solution will be one that involves securing of a yard or a garden so that groundhogs cannot enter. Preventive measures have to be adopted to make your yard or garden less attractive a place for groundhogs to settle underneath.

Exclusion fencing is perhaps the best thing to erect around your San Francisco garden or yard and there ways to disguise such fences. It is necessary to make sure that all cavities and holes beneath your property are properly sealed up with the help of a wire mesh as groundhogs are always looking for opportunities to make their homes through cavities in the ground.

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