Groundhog “Woodchuck” – Marmota Monax

Distinguishing Features – Overall colouration, varying, from pale buff to black with buff-tipped guard hairs, giving a “salt and pepper” appearance; dark brown to black on tail and feet. Heavy-bodied; short-legged.



45.7 – 65 cm (18 – 25.6 in)


Widespread throughout Northwestern Ontario; prefers pastures and fields; forest edges.


Grazer; vegetative parts of plants, leaves, bark, saplings; fruits and vegetables.



The groundhog is a nervous animal and never forages far from its burrow where it is vulnerable to attack by many kinds of predators. It is a true hibernator that accumulates a thick layer of fat during the summer to see it though winter inside its deep, sealed burrow, built below the frost line.

A female will produce a litter of 1 to 9 offspring each year.