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Mammal. Eastern marmots are ground-dwelling rodents of the squirrel family. In North America they are called groundhogs or woodchucks. Marmots use lookouts to watch for predators. When a predator is spotted, the lookout whistles loudly. Marmots are excellent diggers, and construct an elaborate system of burrows, each with both a main entrance and an escape tunnel. Their burrows are used as dens by other animals, including skunks and foxes. During the summer, marmots gain weight in order to prepare for hibernation. They usually hibernate all winter and may lose as much as half their body weight by February.
Scientific Name Lifespan
Marmota monax 6 years, 10 in captivity
Herbivore. Grasses, leaves, flowers, clover, and herbs.
Predators and Threats
Foxes, coyotes, bobcats, eagles, hawks, owls, and humans.
They are never far from cover in grassy pastures, small woodlots, and forests; North America, Europe, and Asia.