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Chipmunks

These small and brown woodland rodent don't live in trees, but in burrows in the ground.

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small chipmunk outside a home

• Type of rodent- Often mistaken for their larger cousin, the squirrel

• 5-6 inches is the average adult size/ short brown fur with darker stripes down back

• Lives in burrows on the ground/can cause significant damage to landscaping

• Indoor wiring, plumbing, insulation and pantry items are at risk when they come inside

• Will quickly bite and scratch to defend themselves

• Known carriers of parasites: fleas, mites, lice etc.

Bites or Stings

Contaminates Food

Damages Landscapes

Damages Structures

Difficult to Eradicate

Hazard to Health

Spreads Illness

Structure Invading

• Spring- Active- Emerge from their winter seclusion underground in search of food and water
• Summer- Very active searching and gathering food
• Fall- Activity continues until the temperature begins to drop
• Winter- No activity- Underground in tunnels in a temporary hibernation

Chipmunk Identification

Chipmunks have brownish-red bodies with distinctive stripes running down their backs; there are two light brown colored stripes and five blackish colored stripes. Chipmunks also have two tan and two darker brown stripes located on the sides of their faces.  Adults grow to be about 5-6 inches in length, not including their flattened hairy tail which is 3-4 inches in length; adults weigh about 3 ounces.

The chipmunk is a type of ground dwelling rodent that creates burrows in lawns, in the foundations of buildings, under decks and sheds, and under brush and wood piles. The burrows contain nesting areas, food storage areas, and escape tunnels.  They do not nest in trees, but they will climb them in order to hide and get away from predators.  

Chipmunks are omnivores and feed on a variety of food items that include: nuts, seeds, plant bulbs, fruit, eggs, snails, and insects. They will carry food and other items that they collect in their furred cheek pouches.

Dangers Associated With Chipmunks

Chipmunks can cause a lot of problems for property owners; they will cause significant damage to lawns, plants, and bulbs, along with causing damage to foundations. If chipmunks get inside a home, they will damage structural elements like wiring, pipes, and insulation along with leaving trails of urine and feces. 

Chipmunk Prevention

Chipmunk prevention can be difficult, but there are several things you can do around your home and property to help deter them. Make sure that garbage cans have tight fitting or locking lids on them and store them away from the outside of your house; it is also a good idea to place wood piles away from your dwelling, and remove any piles of debris from your property.  Remove bird feeders from your property or, at the very least, place them a good distance from your home. 

In regards to your home make sure that any chimneys have tight fitting caps, make sure that vent covers are secure, and replace any missing or broken roof shingles. It is also a good idea to trim back trees and shrubs from the foundation, roofline, and eaves - chipmunks can use their branches to easily gain access to your house.

Chipmunk Control 

If chipmunks have become a problem on your property or in your home the best way to get rid of them safely and humanely is with the help of a professional. At ChemTec our animal control specialist will find and remove any chipmunks that are causing problems for you.  Our professionals will then be able to offer solutions using exclusion methods and habit modification to prevent future problems with these furry garden pests.

For more information about how ChemTec can help to control chipmunks and other garden pests through our animal control services, please  contact us today!

Additional Chipmunk Articles

Preventing Wildlife Problems In New Jersey


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