top of page

The groundhog

The fauna and flora of Andorra is very varied. Just stroll through some of the valleys and mountains of the Principality and soon we will see how each area presents a very diverse ecosystem. However, there are some species that we can find in more than one space and that have a place in our hearts, such as groundhogs. These small rodents with an affable face and a chubby body usually give us a stuffed appearance, but we cannot forget that they are wild animals and therefore behave as such.

Groundhogs are closely related to squirrels, although they are larger in size and, unlike their relatives, have terrestrial habits. Their thick fur and body fat make them easily adaptable to the cold, they usually live around 15 years, and they live generally in families made of a couple adults and their babies in burrows that they build themselves.

If we talk about food, they are herbivores. They feed on herbs, wild berries, roots... The weigh about 8 kilograms each and reach sexual maturity when they are two years old. They are mammals and the gestation of the offspring is around five months. However, childbirth is a bit more complicated, as it can last between four to five days. They also tend to spend quite a bit of time in their burrow during hibernation, which usually lasts for seven months.

Two characteristic features of groundhogs are their sociability and the great variety of sounds they use to communicate with each other, especially when they want to warn of any danger or predator. Its main enemies are the raven, the owl and the golden eagle.

bottom of page