When tackling a digging or demolition project at home, you want to choose the right earthmoving equipment rather than assuming that any part of the project should be done by hand. Bobcats, mini cranes, trenchers, and other equipment will make quick work of digging and excavating while keeping you safe in the cab of the equipment. Because there may be more types of earthmoving equipment from which to choose than you realized, note a few suggestions for how to select the right piece.
An excavator is like a crane, with a long arm and narrow bucket. This is best for digging deeper holes, as you'll need the length of the crane's arm to reach the necessary depths. The longer arm is also good if you need to stay on the edge of a water body such as a pond, as the longer arm allows you to reach the waterbed from the shore. The narrow bucket and long arm can also be the right choice for any demolition involved with your earthmoving; if you need to dig up a pool or tear down a garage or shed as part of your project, you need the longer arm to reach the excavation while allowing that safe distance between the work and you in the cab.
A loader has a longer, wider bucket attached to two arms. It makes quick work of bigger excavating jobs and may be able to carry the heavier weight of rocks, cement blocks, and the like more readily than an excavator; the longer, smaller arm of the excavator might not be able to manage the weight of overly moist or rocky soil. However, note that the arms of loaders are much shorter than with an excavator, so you may want to use it only for clearing topsoil for a new driveway and the like.
When choosing earthmoving equipment, you may want to consider the attachment and not just the actual mover itself. A grabber is like a claw that is on the end of an excavator; this can help you to grab and tear up trees and other vegetation, rather than trying to dig up their roots and remove them that way. Hammers are good for very rocky soil as they help to chip away at larger rocks buried under the ground and which might be too heavy to move, or for those you don't want to move completely but simply break up. A trencher is a long, narrow bucket that is meant for digging long trenches, and they make quick work of these wider digs. Ask your earthmoving contracting company about the type of attachment you would need according to the excavating or digging work you need done.