CHIPMUNKS

David E. Williams
State Director
USDA-APHIS-Wildlife Services
Lincoln, Nebraska 68501

Robert M. Corrigan
Staff Specialist
Vertebrate Pest Management
Purdue University
West Lafayette, Indiana 47907

Additional Chipmunk Control Info

 

Chipmunk, Tamias striatus
Fig. 1. Eastern chipmunk, Tamias striatus

Damage and Damage Identification

Throughout their North American range, chipmunks are considered minor agricultural pests. Most conflicts with chipmunks are nuisance problems. When chipmunks are present in large numbers they can cause structural damage by burrowing under patios, stairs, retention walls, or foundations. They may also consume flower bulbs, seeds, or seedlings, as well as bird seed, grass seed, and pet food that is not stored in rodent-proof storage containers. In New England, chipmunks and tree squirrels cause considerable damage to maple sugar tubing systems by gnawing the tubes.

Legal Status

Chipmunks are not protected by federal law, but state and local regulations may apply. Most states allow landowners or tenants to take chipmunks when they are causing or about to cause damage. Some states, (for example, Georgia, North Carolina, and Arkansas) require a permit to kill nongame animals. Other states are currently developing laws to protect all nongame species. Consult your local conservation agency or USDA-APHIS-ADC personnel for the legal status of chipmunks in your state.

Economics of Damage and Control

The majority of chipmunk damage involves minimal economic loss (under $200). Homeowners report that chipmunks are quite destructive when it comes to their burrowing activities around structures. This damage warrants an investment in control to protect structural integrity of stairs, patios, and foundations. Their consumption of seeds, flower bulbs, fruit, and vegetables is often a nuisance.

Editors

Scott E. Hygnstrom; Robert M. Timm; Gary E. Larson

Prevention and Control of Wildlife Damage 1994

PREVENTION AND CONTROL OF WILDLIFE DAMAGE — 1994

Cooperative Extension Division Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources University of Nebraska -Lincoln

United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service Animal Damage Control

Great Plains Agricultural Council Wildlife Committee

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