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Humane rabbit control?
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dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 22 6:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

shooting is at best a means of harvest and perhaps reducing overall numbers a little, to remove them is a far bigger task

removing "vermin" is not pretty, it can be done whatever the ethical and practical obstacles that reduce the options

pumped concrete would work as area denial in that burrow system others may be dug around it later, expensive, invisible on top, ugly underground and rather permanently intrusive on a sensitive site, ugly

rodinator , not legal in the uk, fuel air barometric will disrupt a burrow system beyond use, ugly and disruptive

could you flood them by redirecting a stream or whatever? rat burrows are vulnerable to water and liquid mud
see scaled up but pumped mud/clay slurry would work and would be less intrusive than concrete in a sensitive place
both are ugly

you may have noticed the ugly theme, ask them politely to go away is an option, get genocidal on their fluffy scuts is probably the practical option

would a heavy harvest reduce them to acceptable numbers?
if so personal might be sufficient

if they must be gone this will get ugly, the kindest effective ugly is the best way to feel ok about what had to be done

ugly, umm, any chance of importing a mixy bunny or one with that horrid "new" bunny disease?
blowback and by catch are always a problem with biological warfare and an empty warren is a desirable property

not quite so ugly, would a bit of help for bunny killing critters reduce them to acceptable levels?
big owls, stoats etc foxes(oh dear) are all quite keen on a bunny dinner
snakes? probably not a good idea

a falconer might like a place to fly the birds, i recon bunnies might be packing their bags after a few weeks of death from above

how fluffy are you feeling? gone away forever can have a high moral price which might be ok if the circumstances deserve it, reduced to acceptable numbers is easier and usually less ethically challenging.

the practical stuff is situation specific, what is acceptable from the practical options adds an important set of parameters

ps caddyshack is not a comedy movie, it is among the things they dont teach you at school

preventing reinfestation as well as the clearance needs consideration before the bunnies are approached with bad intent
undefended prime real estate will be re occupied, plan for the long game and the opening moves will become obvious

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 22 6:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

my last bunny experience was educational for me and very funny for them

gun, good hounds, one victim in a couple of years that was immediately scooped up by a fox(who was also on the vermin list)

did i mention caddyshack?

ps in other places harvest has been easy dinner

NorthernMonkeyGirl



Joined: 10 Apr 2011
Posts: 4384
Location: Peeping over your shoulder
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 22 10:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Falcon could be informative, but would it be too slow (bunnies per hour)?

It's an archaeological site hence no digging, also means no flooding etc. Some fencing may be used to control sheep access (enough to trim grass, not enough to churn up soil) but probably not able to fence against rabbits. The hope is that removing gorse etc cover would dissuade bunnies moving back in.

If landowner is happy to keep having rabbit pie, a big hit then ongoing control could work. May be only option.

I think I would "prefer" ferrets, but assumed that digging them out would be very normal. Is it fairly uncommon for ferret to get stuck then? Would ferret scent also deter bunnies moving back in?

Thanks all

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 03, 22 10:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

a decent ferret will clear a burrow in a few goes
as mentioned, they usually pop up as they finish a clearing if they are trained and well handled

a few might try underground eating, they get bored and like sardines etc

i loathe the things and still have bite scars from a so called tame one, good for the rabbit job if they have a good handler that knows what can and cannot be done

zero rabbits is far harder than only a few rabbits, consider the end game

re gorse, burn it is not on, so cut and pull with big gloves etc
that changes how a bunny sees that real estate big time

please dont throw me in the bramble bush

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 13576

PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 22 7:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Clearing scrub from the site will make it less rabbit friendly and make it easier for predators to keep them under control. If you are able to fence, once fairly well cleared, a 'one way' exit may help too. Rabbit net turned outwards at the bottom and pegged or otherwise held down so that the rabbits can't get under it with a hollow, hole or similar with the edges of the wire turned out so the rabbits can't get back in. I don't think it is common to have ferrets go to ground, but I don't know that much about them I am afraid.

Shan



Joined: 13 Jan 2009
Posts: 9036
Location: South Wales
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 22 10:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

As per dpack's flooding, perhaps a few IBCs of water and a petrol pump?

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Tue Jan 04, 22 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Shan wrote:
As per dpack's flooding, perhaps a few IBCs of water and a petrol pump?


industrial, but it would take a lot of water for a big burrow system

clean up King Augeas' stables, probably easier if the option is available

the local ones just move up hill for a bit if it gets damp from flooding
on other criteria flooding or the tunnellers' worst nightmares might be very innapropriate on that site

clear the jungle and unleash the preditors seems a decent first plan if only to reduce them

ps checking their spoil heaps can be educational, i was rather surprised at a bit of pottery a bunny did not want in a place i would have not looked for it

NorthernMonkeyGirl



Joined: 10 Apr 2011
Posts: 4384
Location: Peeping over your shoulder
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 22 9:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Reading a reference on badger sett relocation (from archaeology site) they made a point of examining the spoil heaps to help determine what was underneath, apparently was very informative even without full context.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 22 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

detectorists and archaeologists can find interesting things in the spoil heaps of burrowing critters

i am quite keen on the moles of york, so far nowt by eye but if you don't look etc
the bit of roman pot was about a mile from the nearest known roman site

once the scrub is cleared, a detector and sieve team could further upset the bunnies by sifting their patios

NorthernMonkeyGirl



Joined: 10 Apr 2011
Posts: 4384
Location: Peeping over your shoulder
PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 22 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

dpack wrote:


once the scrub is cleared, a detector and sieve team could further upset the bunnies by sifting their patios


That would also be good for public engagement box ticking

Food for thought - sadly I'm not currently up in your part of the world!

Currently seems like first suggestion would be scrub removal, sieving the heaps, then ferrets with a "NO DIGGING" clause.

Or, before deploying ferrets, do all rabbits leave the burrow each night in a way that might make one-way gates feasible? Not possible if it would leave babies un-fed in a nest

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 13576

PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 22 8:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

I think you would have to read up on the breeding habits of rabbits. Afraid it is not a thing I have ever studied. Scrub clearance does seem the best first step, and keep it cleared until rabbits are well under control. That sounds a sensible plan of action altogether.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 22 10:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

NorthernMonkeyGirl wrote:


Currently seems like first suggestion would be scrub removal, sieving the heaps, then ferrets with a "NO DIGGING" clause.
yep

Or, before deploying ferrets, do all rabbits leave the burrow each night in a way that might make one-way gates feasible? Not possible if it would leave babies un-fed in a nest
very plausibly litters would die unfed, ditto drop traps, shot etc, eradication is brutal however it is done


ps reinfestation is also a consideration as the site seems to have things buns like
once cleared keeping it clear and "busy" in a compatible manner might prevent them recolonising

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 22 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

fluffy might not work, and "fluffy" usually is not from the vermin's point of view
ie a displaced rat is probably a dead rat quite soon, from a nest and into a pig pen is horrible to listen to but etc

if i understand properly, preserving the site is important

put watership down behind us

get em gone as kindly as possible, dead may be kinder than displaced, both is probably as good as is might be

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 41513
Location: yes
PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 22 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

badger badger badger


Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 13576

PostPosted: Tue Jan 11, 22 7:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
    

Apart from their setts, badgers also dig outliers, which are inhabited during the spring and summer. We think these might be for displaced badgers when there are cubs in the main sett, as we have seen no evidence for them being used at other times of the year. They are also good at making scrapes looking for food and digging shallow hollows for latrines. The trick with the latter is to find them before they find you.

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