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11 Animals that eat Tomatoes (with Pictures)

11 Animals that eat Tomatoes

Tomatoes are some of the most common plants grown in gardens around the world. They’re also tasty – not only for humans but also for the animals that live nearby.

That’s why many animals eat them.

Animals that eat tomatoes include squirrels, raccoons, deer, rabbits, birds, and pigs (as well as many others listed below).

Some of these animals are wild animals that will eat your tomatoes in your garden. Others will eat tomatoes as a snack, while some are fed tomatoes by their owners. For some farmers, these animals might cause a lot of damage to their tomato crops.

What Eats Tomatoes?

These are some of the animals that might be eating tomatoes from your garden!

1. Squirrels

Squirrel
Scientific NameSciuridae
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeAustralia and Antarctica

Squirrels are small and lovely animals, but did you know that they might be eating your tomato crops? 

They prefer to eat smaller foods like nuts and roots, but if there aren’t any similar foods around, they might resort to stealing your crops such as tomatoes. If you see a small bite of tomato chewed off, then it’s highly possible that a squirrel was looking for a good meal in your garden.

Read Also: 15 Examples of Symbiosis in Nature

2. Raccoons

raccoon
Scientific NameProcyon lotor
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeNorth America

Raccoons are opportunists. They like to wait around and see if there are any foods that might be easy to get. Sometimes, they might resort to finding food in garbage bins and human waste. That’s possibly the easiest strategy for finding food for them.

An alternative might be finding food crops around houses such as tomatoes. They like to eat many types of vegetables including tomatoes. Many people who own raccoons as pets will feed them a variety of veggies – which is important to keep the diet of a raccoon as varied as possible.

3. Deer

deer chewing grass
Scientific NameCervidae
Type of AnimalMammal
Rangeall continents except Australia and Antarctica

Deer are often near the bottom of the feeding chain. They often find themselves prey to larger predators such as wolves, bears, coyotes, and other apex predators in their habitat. It’s a shame since deer are highly peaceful animals that will mainly eat a strictly herbivorous diet, which includes tomatoes.

If you have your garden protected and properly fenced, then it will be almost impossible for deer to find their way into your garden. However, leaving your tomatoes exposed will give the deer a chance to find themselves a good source of food, so they’ll take advantage of this opportunity quickly.

4. Groundhogs

Groundhog
Scientific NameMarmota monax
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeCanada and into Alaska

A groundhog is a rodent that lives in forests. In many ways, it’s very similar to squirrels, as it shares a similar type of diet to the squirrel. They’re mostly herbivorous, relying on grasses and vegetation and other foods available in their habitat.

In addition to grasses and other similar foods, groundhogs will also eat foods such as tomatoes. They’re often prey animals, so they need to take advantage of every food source they can find in their way, so they won’t hesitate to eat your crops, too.

Related Article: 27 Animals that Look Like Groundhogs

5. Rabbits

rabbit
Scientific NameOryctolagus cuniculus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide

Rabbit is another animal that likes to eat tomatoes. These animals are mostly found in the wild where they rely on herbivorous foods, but many people keep rabbits as pets. In both cases, these small mammals like to eat tomatoes and other similar foods.

Because of their small stature, rabbits have a slight preference for smaller tomato plants, but they will chew away the larger tomatoes if they get the chance to.

Related Article: 19 Animals Like Rabbits

6. Birds

Shorebird
Scientific NameSialia sialis
Type of AnimalBird
Rangeeastern North America and south as far as Nicaragua

Did you know that one of the most common animals that eat your tomatoes is a bird? Depending on where you live, there might be several types of birds pecking away at your tomatoes, including:

  • Mockingbirds
  • Blue Jays
  • Cardinals
  • Crows
  • Blackbirds
  • Others

To protect your crops against birds, it’s best to put cages around your tomatoes so that birds can’t access them. This might not be possible for all types of crops, though, as some tomato plants are too high for cages.

7. Caterpillars

Caterpillar
Scientific NameLarva
Type of AnimalInsect
RangeWorldwide
DietHerbivore

Caterpillars are also one of the most common animals you’ll find eating your tomato plants. Tomato hornworms, specifically, are known for eating tomatoes. While these large caterpillars like to chew away on the leaves of your tomatoes, they might also go for the fruit itself.

It’s not easy to protect your tomato crops against caterpillars. Some farmers use various deterrents, but many of these use chemicals that might be harming your tomatoes and making them potentially dangerous to your health. Some suggest putting cardboard around your tomatoes so that caterpillars can’t climb on your plants.

8. Colorado Potato Beetles

The Colorado potato beetle, as the name suggests, is a small bug that feeds on potatoes. But even though this animal prefers to eat potatoes, it won’t say no to tomatoes either. In most areas of the world, it’s seen as a pest. Many farmers have problems getting these animals away from their gardens, too.

9. Voles

vole
Scientific NameMicrotus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeAlaska and Mexico
DietHerbivore

Voles are small rodents that live in different habitats – mainly forests and near rivers. In terms of character and appearance, they are close relatives to hamsters, so they also have similar preferences when it comes to food.

They have primarily a strictly herbivorous diet. Voles like to eat plants such as tomatoes and other leafy plants you might have in your garden. A good sign that a vole is eating your tomatoes is small dents in your tomatoes where the teeth of the vole are clearly visible, which indicates it has found its way into your garden.

10. Pigs

Pig
Scientific NameSus scrofa domesticus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeWorldwide

Even pigs like to eat tomatoes on occasion. Farm pigs are often fed a variety of different foods – mainly herbivorous. Among them are tomatoes, which represent a good type of feed for domestic pigs. Wild boars don’t eat tomatoes so commonly but might do so if they have access to the crops.

Related Article: 9 Animals Like Pigs

11. Black Bears

Fuzzy black bear
Scientific NameUrsus americanus
Type of AnimalMammal
RangeAlaska, much of Canada

Bears might be a surprising addition to this list. However, they like to eat plants such as tomatoes on occasion, despite the fact that they’re among the most proficient hunters in the wild.

Conclusion

Tomatoes are among the most common crops that farmers have, so they are sometimes getting eaten by the animals that live nearby. This includes both large and small animals that have access to tomato crops.

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