From the GMA Techline
RE: Critter control
Have you ever heard of an instance where critters (groundhogs, for instance) dug through a geomembrane cap?
[We have heard] stories about membrane repair in response to rats and groundhogs. The rats were trapped in a lined floodwall berm. The groundhogs are more disturbing. We have those everywhere.
And at this particular site in Indiana, the culprits are coyotes! Hard to believe, but the vegetative soil cover is only 18” thick, so how could they dig a den without penetrating the membrane?
(Brian | USA)
Reply: Yes, there are several instances. Two of them occurred at reservoirs in the exposed runout areas between the anchor trench and the geomembrane going down the slope. I believe both were caused by trapped animals trying to escape from the confined area beneath the geomembrane.
Important in this discussion is not only the mass and aggressiveness of the burrowing animal but also the density and sharpness of its teeth or claws.
I think we might start a research project in this area since the question comes up so often.