Bird Damage To Lawns – Why Are Birds Digging Up My Lawn


By: Mary Ellen Ellis

Most of us love having backyard birds to watch and to feed. The music of songbirds is a sure sign of spring. If you’re finding small holes in your grass and you see a lot of birds around, the damage is probably caused by birds foraging for food. There are some ways you can keep birds from digging up lawn and grass. Read on to learn more.

Why are Birds Digging up my Lawn?

It’s not hard to identify bird damage to lawns. If you see a lot of birds in your yard and you find small, about one-inch (2.5-cm.) holes in the turf, it’s most likely bird-related damage. What are birds digging for in your lawn? The phenomenon of birds digging holes in lawns has an easy explanation: food.

They’re looking for tasty snacks, so if you’re seeing a lot of bird damage, it means you have an insect problem. Basically, your lawn is the best restaurant around because it has so many bugs. Birds are simply foraging for grubs, worms, and insects. The good news about this is that the grubs and insects will actually do more damage to your lawn than the birds will, and the birds are helping you control the population.

How to Keep Birds from Digging up Lawn

If you want to avoid the bird damage of small holes all over your lawn, you have to get rid of the insect pests.

To get rid of your bug problem, invest in a pesticide, preferably something natural. You can either have it applied by a professional lawn company or you can do it yourself. It is important to time the application. If you have grubs, for instance, you need to apply in late spring or early summer.

It’s also important to time application to avoid harming the birds. Apply the pesticide in late afternoon so it will be dry by the next morning when the birds reappear to search for breakfast.

If you prefer not to have birds at all around your property, there is little you can do but you can try using a few scare tactics that may keep the birds away.

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What's digging up lawn?

Every year something digs up parts of my lawn. I've always assumed squirrels, but Could it be something else? I have seen badgers ambling in to my neighbour's garden, and they could easily access mine. But is the damage too slight for a badger? There are other, smaller holes in the lawn also.

Sorry the last photo is blurred, but hopefully it shows the actual hole is about 3 and half inches wide.


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What Kind of Animal Is Digging up Your Lawn?

When you go out in your yard or garden this spring, you may see holes in the ground and wonder what caused them. If they were not created by your dog, a wild animal is most likely to blame. Different animals leave distinctive signs of disturbance in the ground as they search for food or shelter.

Skunks

Skunks dig to search for earthworms, grubs, and insects, as well as other food sources. When skunks dig, they leave behind shallow holes surrounded by loose soil. A skunk will press its nose into the soil and use its front claws to dig for food. You may see the holes in the morning if they were created by a skunk the previous night. The ground may be covered with dozens of holes.

Raccoons

Raccoons also dig up the ground in a search for food, but they do it in a different way than skunks. Raccoons use their front paws to pull and flip sod, especially new grass. If a raccoon and a skunk are searching for food in the same area at night, the skunk may spray to ward off the raccoon. You may notice the small of skunk spray in the morning.

Moles

Moles feed on earthworms, grubs, and insects that live in the soil. Moles dig up soil from below by creating tunnels. They push the soil up, but there are no visible holes left in the ground.

What to Do If an Animal Is Digging up Your Lawn or Garden

A wild animal digging up your yard can create a huge mess that can ruin the appearance of your grass and destroy your garden. If an animal is digging up the ground outside your Connecticut home, you should have it removed as soon as possible, before the digging gets worse. You should not try to catch a wild animal yourself because you could get bitten, scratched, or sprayed.

Call the professionals at Anderson Wildlife Control to have the wild animal removed from your property. We will live-trap and relocate the animal to another place so it will not cause any further damage to your property. We use humane and environmentally friendly methods and never harm the animals we capture. Contact Anderson Wildlife Control today to get an estimate for wildlife removal services.


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Written on: December 03, 2020

Hemera Technologies/Photos.com/Getty Images

You can spend countless hours in your garden making sure the grass is free of weeds, diseases and other blights. But all of your hard work can get ruined if an animal begins digging holes there. Some animals are sneaky and will only dig when you are not around.

This makes it tough to determine which animal is digging and how to go about trapping or killing it.

Look at the hole. If a mound of soil covers a hole you can't see, the intruder is likely to be a mole.

Examine the dug-up area. If the animal has made tunnels that raise the soil but don't break through it, and you can't see the entrance of the hole, a mole is probably digging in your backyard.

  • You can spend countless hours in your garden making sure the grass is free of weeds, diseases and other blights.
  • If the animal has made tunnels that raise the soil but don't break through it, and you can't see the entrance of the hole, a mole is probably digging in your backyard.

Inspect the hole. If you see a shallow burrow that is not next to a soil mound, it is likely caused by a squirrel, vole or shrew. If the hole is 5 cm (2 inches) wide, it is probably a squirrel. If it is less than 3.8 cm (1 1/2 inches), it is probably a vole or shrew. If the hole is 5 to 7.5 cm (2 to 3 inches) wide, it is likely a rat, and holes larger than 10 cm (4 inches) indicate the presence of a rabbit, a badger or a fox.

  • If you see a shallow burrow that is not next to a soil mound, it is likely caused by a squirrel, vole or shrew.
  • If the hole is 5 cm (2 inches) wide, it is probably a squirrel.

Look at the hole with a flashlight to determine its depth. If the burrow is very deep and you see soil around the hole, the intruder is likely a badger. Badgers make holes larger than 30 cm (1 foot) across.

Peer into the hole. If the hole is shallow, as if the animal was searching for insects to eat, it is likely made by a squirrel.

Search around your lawn and garden to determine if the animal has dug up plants. If so, the animal is probably a squirrel or a rabbit. Rabbits usually work at night, while squirrels are active during the day.


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