NFU Mutual Smallholding Insurance

Author Topic: Bl88dy rabbits!!  (Read 2788 times)

suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Bl88dy rabbits!!
« on: March 04, 2012, 07:36:43 am »
We haven't had a great deal of trouble with rabbits up until now but this winter we have planted more hedging and a willow plantation out in the middle field and have moved the polytunnel into the middle field aswell.

As a results we have encroached more on their territory I guess and yesterday I noticed that all my raised bed strawberries have been turned over. There are big holes burrowed into the soil of the raised bed which look rabbit sized. I think they have also been in the polytunnel - digging around in the raised beds.....

we have planted alot of hedging and 100 willow sticks.

Any advice on what we need to do to protect the plants?

We are not very experienced with rabbits.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2012, 07:41:08 am by suziequeue »
We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better
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Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Bl88dy rabbits!!
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2012, 09:30:37 am »
Hi SQ  :wave:  You need to take a stand against the rabbits or you will be taken over.  They can destroy acres and acres.  There is usually someone, maybe a member of the local gun/sports shooting club or ferreters, who will happily clear them for you, if you don't have a gun or terriers.
For the trees you have planted, spiral guards work well to prevent nibbling.  When we had deep snow one year the little devils sat on top of the snow and could reach well above the guards and killed off some of our best trees, but mostly the guards are tall enough.  It is worth the cost or you will be forever replacing ring-barked trees.  I think we get ours in boxes of 250 from Buckingham Nurseries - the clear ones are best.
For the veggie patch, in view of their destructive interest, you need to put up rabbit fencing - tall enough that they can't jump, scamble or levitate over it, and with at least a foot of mesh projecting outwards to stop them burrowing underneath.
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

zwartbles

  • Joined Sep 2011
Re: Bl88dy rabbits!!
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2012, 09:40:59 am »
We use tonic bottles as protection. Sometimes two, one above the other.  If that doesn't work we throw the gin bottles at the bunnies !  :)

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • Wester Gladstone Hebridean Sheep
Re: Bl88dy rabbits!!
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2012, 05:12:59 pm »
The spiral guards from Buckingham Nurseries are 18p each in boxes of 250
www.scothebs.co.uk

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus - let sleeping dragons lie

chrismahon

  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Bl88dy rabbits!!
« Reply #4 on: March 05, 2012, 07:07:33 pm »
Ferrets and nets initially. Then traps and finally a good air rifle to get the older smart ones. There will always be a few but then superficial protection on all your produce shpould be enough. We have lost a whole years seedlings to one rabbit in one night!

suziequeue

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Llanidloes; Powys
Re: Bl88dy rabbits!!
« Reply #5 on: March 06, 2012, 08:40:52 am »
Quote
We have lost a whole years seedlings to one rabbit in one night!

Cripes!!! We have ordered sprial guards as recommended..... a tenth of the price wholesale compared to our local store!!!! They can't come quick enough.

We have also asked the site chippy (we are in the middle of house rebuild) to bring his ferrets, nets, dogs, gun.... whatever he has to bear on the sittuation.

He seems really excited by the prospect so hiopefully hwe will get here this week too.

I have ordered some more bare root strawberry plants. The raised bed has a chicken netting base and I have hoops and netting to go over the top which I hadn't bothered with before... I will now!!
We do the best we can with the information we have

When we know better we do better

 

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