10 Animals That Dig Holes in Yards (With Pictures)

Holes in the yard can be pretty annoying but as part of the natural wildlife cycle, some animals need to dig holes to create a home or to hide their food. From moles to rabbits, these animals can wreak havoc on a well-manicured lawn. Here are 10 animals that dig holes in yards.

1. Groundhogs

Groundhogs or also known as ‘woodchucks,’ tend to burrow in yards that have plenty of food sources. They often feed on vegetation and flowers and dig holes for shelter. In winter, they hibernate in their burrows.

2. Rabbits

As seen in cartoons, rabbits are often known to dig holes in the ground. In the wild, rabbits will create warrens which are a series of tunnels and interconnected chambers that they use for shelter, hiding from predators, and raising their young. They also make pathways underground to get access to fenced gardens where they can feed.

3. Raccoons

Raccoons are known to hide in their dens which are often located in hollow trees, logs, or abandoned groundhog burrows. Raccoons will scratch or dig around for food, but won’t dig deep in the ground. Instead, Raccoons carelessly scrape the ground to find worms and other small prey. They can leave a pretty messy yard in their wake.

4. Earthworms

Earthworms’ underground activities can result in small mounds of dirt on the surface. Earthworms consume organic matter and help aerate the soil as they travel through it. As essential animals in the food chain for birds and raccoons, they play an important role in the ecosystem.

5. Voles

These rodents dig shallow burrows and nests underground to get easy access to food. Voles will also travel above ground through tunnels of grass. They burrow in the winter to stay safe and warm. In the spring and summertime, they will venture out to eat garden plants.

6. Skunks

Most skunks will dig a hole in sodded areas in search of earthworms and white grubs, so lawns are no exception. They can dig up to two feet deep and they do this to find food or shelter. Though not everyone enjoys having them around, these animals serve an important purpose by keeping away other pests such as rats.

7. Moles

Moles are small, burrowing mammals that have a good talent for digging. They are known to connect different systems of tunnels and chambers underground. Moles will travel in these systems to find food which mainly consists of earthworms, snails, and insects.

8. Badgers

Like moles, badgers are also proficient diggers. They create long, horizontal burrows that have several entrances and exits. These omnivorous animals eat plants and insects found in a garden such as fruits, insect larvae, worms, and plant bulbs.

9. Gophers

These animals dig long, complex burrows that can span up to 6 feet deep. Gophers are also known to store food such as tubers, seeds, and bulbs in their burrows. They will often invade gardens and yards in search of a good meal.

10. Squirrel

Squirrels are known to dig small holes in yards as they bury their food. They will also use these same holes to access their food when they’re ready to eat it. They do this to ensure they still have enough food for winter. Other squirrel species dig for shelter.


Burrowing animals instinctively dig holes for many reasons. While this may be a nuisance for homeowners, it’s important to remember that the animals are just trying to survive. Some dig holes for food while others do it for shelter. If you happen to have one of these animals on your property, the best thing you can do is to try to coexist with them or find out the safest way to keep them away.