What Sound Does a Groundhog Make?| Surprising Meaning of Different Sounds (2024)

The groundhog, often called a woodchuck, is a nocturnally quiet creature that makes a lot of noise during the day. Groundhogs like communicating via various chirps and grunts that they use when aroused. But what sound does a groundhog make?

The groundhog is quite vocal while defending itself, making sounds like hissing, shrieking, and the sound of teeth chattering. The woodchuck is so proactive that it whistles to its fellow woodchucks to warn them of impending danger.

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The groundhog avoids detection by remaining silent for most of the day and night, making just the slightest of sounds for self-defense and necessary communication.

The groundhog’s call is a high-pitched whistle or scream that travels up to 500 yards. Some have compared these cries to a quacking noise, while others have said they resemble a shout. The groundhog’s voice is used for underground communication and during mating rituals.

What Sounds Does Groundhog Make?

A groundhog may make many sounds, but a warning grunt and a challenge bark are the most common. A groundhog gives a brief, low warning grunt that it repeats many times.

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When you hear this sound, other groundhogs will know you are getting close to their burrow, and they will run for cover.

Though similar to a grunt in length, the challenged bark is more akin to a snarl. Useful in situations when one groundhog threatens another in a battle for territory. This occurs, for example, when one male attempts to colonize the burrow of another.

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In addition to their trademark “chattering,” groundhogs are known to produce sounds like “clicking their teeth together” and “chattering” when they are agitated. This often occurs after consuming one of their preferred diets, which includes insects, worms, and other plants.

Additional Read: Do you want to fill the chipmunk holes?

3 Types of Sounds Groundhogs Make

Groundhogs can be heard making various noises, from whistling to grunting to chirping to screeching to chuckling to teeth chattering. The groundhog makes various sounds depending on its disposition.

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The groundhog’s primary method of communicating is by chirping. From food to shelter, a groundhog’s requirements may be conveyed via its chirps.


When the groundhog is pleased or aroused, it lets out a grunt. The groundhog often makes this sound while enjoying an activity, like eating, interacting with others, or basking in the sun.

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Using a whistle as a deterrent is quite frequent. When a woodchuck hears a predator in the area, it will whistle to alert the rest of the colony.

In doing so, they both drive away potential predators and notify other groundhogs in the area that danger is there.

Sounds of Baby Groundhog

Baby groundhogs often emit squeaking sounds to help them find their way around, particularly when they are taken outside their burrows. Young groundhogs are unable to vocalize their requirements. Therefore they make a high-pitched whine while calling out for their moms.

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Why Do Groundhogs Scream?

The groundhog’s distinctive calls may be heard from great distances. They are capable of making an impressive variety of noises.

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The groundhog’s scream is the fiercest and most agitated of its several calls. Not only do groundhogs scream, but they also produce a variety of other sounds, such as barking, growling, and hissing. These vocalizations are used in many different contexts by these individuals.

When a groundhog is startled or frightened, it often hears a scream. Possible examples include coming into contact with a person or hearing a loud noise out of the blue. Another possible function of the cry is to warn other groundhogs in the area to keep their distance.

Why do groundhogs chirp, and what is the significance of their screaming? The groundhog chirps to communicate with its family and attract the other sex. Chirping sometimes indicates distress, as when they are threatened or injured.

Roughly three weeks after birth, they begin their incessant chirping, which lasts until they hit adulthood at around four months.

The groundhog’s distinct whistling has earned it the title of Pennsylvania’s state animal.

Groundhog Sounds At Night

A groundhog’s nighttime calls often sound like a sequence of chirps or squeaks and have been likened to those of a mouse. When looking for food or attempting to locate a partner, the animals communicate using these noises.

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This communication may also alert other group members of danger or an oncoming predator or human.

What about groundhog noises, not just those they emit at night? A groundhog could make a purring sound, but it might also chatter or bark.

The noises made by groundhogs span a broad spectrum. They let out quick, high-pitched barks in times of danger or distress. These noises, which are audible day and night, serve as a warning to other groundhogs.

Most predators are driven from a groundhog’s area by the sound of its barking.

When two groundhogs are vying for territory, they may make clicking noises to communicate. Groundhogs, like cats, may be heard making gentle purring noises when they are satisfied or joyful.

Happy Groundhogs Sounds

A groundhog will produce a pleasing grunting sound if they are happy. The noise is a low, resonant chortle that sounds like a human laughing. Its joyfulness causes it to breathe rapidly from and to its nostrils, producing the noise. The noise is often heard in clusters and has a relatively high pitch.

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When groundhogs greet one another with their unique Eskimo kisses, it is customary for them to grunt at each other. One of their unique kisses is tender stroking of noses and mouths. As they do so, they make a soft and friendly grunting noise. One of their memorable kisses is tender stroking of noses and mouths.

Groundhog Warning Call

Before attacking, groundhogs often provide warning cries to nearby animals. They have formidable defensive mechanisms that usually keep them safe from predators.

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The groundhog’s teeth-chattering is an effective warning signal.

A groundhog’s most vigorous defense against predators is a set of chattering teeth. It serves as a warning to other animals that the groundhog’s teeth are dangerously sharp. That’s why the groundhog is considered dangerous to some people.

When groundhogs are startled, they make a sound similar to gnashing teeth. Their warning cry consists of a passive, uncontrolled chattering of teeth, not threatening to gnash teeth.

Panicked Calls of a Groundhog

Groundhogs often whistle when they are in danger. They emit this roar when they are in mortal danger, or sense danger is imminent. Groundhogs in the vicinity may be alerted to leave using a warning whistle. When frightened, groundhogs make loud squeals and screams.

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Groundhogs Growling Sounds

Groundhogs may sometimes let off a low, deep growl when agitated or attempting to frighten other animals. The groundhog does not only try to scare away rival animals by growling at them.

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The groundhog also makes loud shrills. In most cases, groundhogs will use them to fend off irate predators.


Their roar resembles a murmured warble, and it is highly frightening to some creatures. Compared to the growls of canids and foxes, these sounds could not be more unlike. They are warbles that look like a leaner or swifter animal.


The groundhog protects itself against huge predators by making a high-pitched shrill noise. The groundhog’s high-pitched, piercing cry serves as a warning to would-be predators.

Since the shrill is so loud, if the groundhog cannot scare away its attacker, it usually has enough time to get away while the sound preoccupies the predator.

How to Recognize Groundhog Sounds?

As such vocal animals, groundhogs’ calls are easy to pick out and recognize; some sounds even allude to the animal’s namesake.

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Keep an Eye

Keep an eye on the animal while it creates the noise. While chowing down, woodchucks produce chuck-chucking sounds. This noise is what first drew attention to the woodchuck.

Listen for the Shift in Tone

Listen for the shift in tone that occurs when the animal is startled. In the event of impending danger, a woodchuck will whistle loudly and high-pitched to warn other animals.

This high-pitched whistle is followed by a more subdued one when the animal returns to its burrow. The woodchuck’s unique calls led to another of its common names: whistling pig.

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Squeals Indicate an Injured Groundhog

Woodchuck squeals are generally a sign that the animal has been hurt or trapped by a predator, so you should proceed with care if you hear one. This noise is also produced by woodchucks when they are in discomfort or when they are fighting with one another.

Differentiate Between Conversation and Grooming Sounds

Know the difference between talking sounds and the grinding or grating of grooming noises. Woodchucks, like other rodents, have ever-evolving sets of teeth. The woodchuck grinds its teeth regularly to maintain them at a manageable length; otherwise, it would have problems eating and grooming.

Listen for Low Barking

Keep your ears open for a soft, low barking sound. Scientists have not determined the origin of this noise.

Listen for Hiss

The hiss of a woodchuck means you should immediately cease your current activity. This noise is usually used to defend against or attack potential predators.

A groundhog making whistle cal:

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Do Groundhogs Growl?

When disturbed, groundhogs whistle to alert others. Angry groundhogs hiss, shriek, or growl.

2. Why Do Groundhogs Squeal?

When fighting, hurt, or captured, groundhogs shriek. Low barks and teeth-grinding noises are also familiar.

3. What Sound Do Groundhogs Make When Warning Others of Danger?

Whistle-pig comes from groundhogs’ propensity to whistle whenever they feel intimidated.

4. Are Groundhogs Aggressive?

Burrowing causes structural deterioration. Groundhogs, commonly called woodchucks, are aggressive and hard to remove. These rats build tunnels in grasslands and destroy plants.

Final Words

Now you know what sound does a groundhog make. Groundhogs create several noises. The groundhog’s scream is loud and unique.

The groundhog’s squeak warns animals of danger. The groundhog makes noises to communicate or for fun.

The groundhog’s sound is louder and more distinct than a dog whistle. Its scream comprises fast-repeated notes.

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Groundhog Sounds

The groundhog, also known as a woodchuck, is a fascinating creature known for its vocalizations and communication methods. Groundhogs are nocturnal and typically remain silent for most of the day and night, using sounds primarily for self-defense and necessary communication.

Types of Sounds Groundhogs Make:

  • Chirping: Groundhogs primarily communicate through chirping, conveying their needs and messages through this sound.
  • Grunting: When pleased or aroused, groundhogs emit a grunt, often while engaging in activities like eating or basking in the sun.
  • Whistling: Whistling is a common deterrent used by groundhogs to alert others of potential danger in the area.
  • Sounds of Baby Groundhog: Baby groundhogs emit high-pitched squeaking sounds, particularly when they are outside their burrows and seeking their mothers.

Why Do Groundhogs Make Different Sounds:

  • Screaming: Groundhogs are capable of making an impressive variety of noises, including screaming, which is the fiercest and most agitated of their calls. They also produce other sounds like barking, growling, and hissing, used in various contexts.
  • At Night: At night, groundhogs communicate through chirps, squeaks, and other noises, which can also serve as alerts for danger or predators.

Recognizing Groundhog Sounds:

  • Shift in Tone: Listen for shifts in tone, particularly when the animal is startled or warning others of danger.
  • Squeals Indicate Injury: Squeals from a groundhog often indicate injury or distress, and differentiation between conversation and grooming sounds is important.
  • Low Barking and Hissing: Groundhogs may emit low barking sounds, and hissing is used for defense or attack against potential predators.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Do Groundhogs Growl? When disturbed, groundhogs whistle to alert others, and when angry, they may hiss, shriek, or growl.
  2. Why Do Groundhogs Squeal? Groundhogs may shriek when fighting, hurt, or captured, and also emit low barks and teeth-grinding noises.
  3. What Sound Do Groundhogs Make When Warning Others of Danger? Groundhogs are known to whistle when feeling intimidated, hence the nickname "whistle-pig."
  4. Are Groundhogs Aggressive? Groundhogs, commonly called woodchucks, are known to be aggressive and can cause structural damage due to their burrowing habits.

In conclusion, groundhogs make a variety of sounds for communication, defense, and warning, showcasing their complex vocal abilities and social behaviors.

What Sound Does a Groundhog Make?| Surprising Meaning of Different Sounds (2024)


What sound does a groundhog makes? ›

So what kind of noises do groundhog make? Well, when they're happy they grunt! When they're frightened, they make a loud shrill to scare aware predators. And when they fight, they squeal!

What does it mean when a groundhog screams? ›

Groundhogs may squeal when fighting, seriously injured, or caught by a predator.

What noise do groundhogs make when they are alarmed or in the spring when they are looking for a mate? ›

Interestingly, “When alarmed, they use a high-pitched whistle to warn the rest of the colony, hence the name 'whistle-pig'.

What is unique about groundhogs? ›

Groundhogs live near rocky outcrops from valley bottoms to alpine tundra, but they avoid dense forest. They are active mostly at dawn and dusk. Groundhogs are exceptional diggers and will use their claws to create an intricate system of underground burrows, which even include a separate “bathroom” chamber!

Do groundhogs make a whistling sound? ›

The name whistle-pig, which is most common in Appalachia, stems from groundhogs' habit of making a high-pitched whistling sound, usually as a warning to other groundhogs when they feel threatened.

What noise do groundhogs hate? ›

Use Scare Tactics

Scarecrows that are moved around regularly or used on scarecrow sprinklers can offer temporary relief, but they don't work long-term to frighten groundhogs into digging up someone else's yard. Ultrasonic noise and vibrations can scare away groundhogs, moles, and other digging pests.

Why do groundhogs walk in circles? ›

Groundhogs can be infected by rabies. They can also suffer from other ailments. Some signs that a groundhog is in need of help include falling over, appearing disoriented, or walking in circles. If you notice a groundhog displaying any of these symptoms, please call Humane Rescue Alliance at 202-723-5730.

What are the benefits of having a groundhog in your yard? ›

Soil Aeration

When digging, groundhogs help aerate soil. Roots, like all other parts of the plant, have to respire, taking in oxygen and emitting carbon dioxide. In unturned soil, roots deplete their limited oxygen while CO2accumulates, making it hard for them to 'breathe.

How many groundhogs live in a burrow? ›

For a greater part of the year, burrow occupancy is limited to one groundhog per unit. Exceptions occur when males visit the burrows of females during a late winter breeding season, and consequently, following a 32-day gestation period, when females give birth to four to six kits.

Do windchimes scare groundhogs? ›

Scare Them: Groundhogs are shy. Noisy moving items may work. Use wind chimes, pinwheels or other decorative but functional items. Fence Them Out: Groundhogs can jump short fences and tunnel under others, so it's important to do this right.

What is the lifespan of a groundhog? ›

Lifespan: In the wild, groundhogs can live up to six years with two or three being average. In captivity, groundhogs reportedly live up to 14 years. Breeding: Groundhogs tend to be solitary except in the spring when a litter of four to six young are born. Litters of one to nine have been recorded.

What are baby groundhogs called? ›

Baby groundhogs go by several names. They can be called pups, kits, and cubs. Groundhogs usually give birth to litters with around three to six pups, though they can occasionally give birth to 10 young in some litters. Adult groundhogs are also called woodchucks and even whistlepigs.

What is a groundhog's favorite food? ›

Favorite foods include alfalfa, clover, peas, beans, lettuce, broccoli, plantain, and soybeans. Groundhogs will often devour your seedlings before they even have time to grow. Rabbits and deer eat some of the same plants, so make sure to check for burrows before concluding that you have groundhogs.

What eats groundhogs? ›

Hawks and rattlesnakes eat the young woodchucks; bobcats, coyotes, foxes and domestic dogs also prey on this species.

Can groundhogs see you? ›

Groundhogs also have very keen senses of sight, smell and hearing. Sensory organs are located near the top of the head, enabling the animal to check for danger by sticking its head out of the burrow.

What's the best time of day to hunt groundhogs? ›

The best time of the day to hunt groundhogs is during the coolest parts of the day. I have people to tell me they are very active during the early morning, just after daybreak. I have always preferred to hunt them in the late afternoon and early evening.

Do groundhogs come out during the day? ›

Activity: Groundhogs are diurnal (active during the day) from spring to fall. Most activity occurs during the early morning and early evening hours, at which groundhogs emerge from their burrows to gather food. Hibernation: Groundhogs are true hibernators, entering a deep sleep in October and emerging in early spring.

Will noise keep groundhogs away? ›

Noise – This one may seem odd but playing music outside or installing windchimes or a garden decoration that that makes noise can be off putting to groundhogs as well.

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