Rabbit Season: My Thoughts on the Pests that Live in Our Yard

I think I want to kill the rabbits that are living in my yard. We moved from Salt Lake City, Utah to St. Paul, Minnesota almost 2 years ago. We purchased a home with a large, lovely yard in September, 2005. At that point it was a little late to be doing much in the yard as far as new plants, etc. The next spring, however, we planted a ton of bare root plants from a catalog. These plants are sort of precariously perched on the fence between living and dying as it is, so we carefully planted them and they seemed to be growing and doing okay. Then, soon after they started new green growth, we noticed that every morning, a few more of them were completely leveled off with the ground.

Completely unconnected occurrences in our minds, we began to see rabbits every once in a while outside in the back yard. “Oh, how cute,” we said. My baby daughter turned one last May and we would point out the darling rabbits in the backyard, “Look at the bunnies, Leiden! Look at them hop!” Right.

One day my husband and I were lamenting the loss of our plants and wishing we could do something about it, and he told me he thought it was the rabbits eating the green shoots of new plants all over the yard-and the shoots of some of the not so new plants. “Really? I’ve never seen them doing that.” That would be because they are nocturnal animals. They come out and eat at night, when we are all unaware in our beds. I’ve half a mind to stay up tonight and keep my shovel handy. One swift swipe and it’s goodbye rabbits.

We found a liquid repellent that indeed repels-us. It smells horrible, and I guess it approximates the smell of urine of one of the predators that eat rabbits. It kind of worked last year, but with brand new plants, they can only take so much eating before they stop living. This year, in the last few weeks, the crocuses and tulips we bought with our hard earned money and planted so painstakingly in our garden started coming up. As the snow melted and the temperatures got warmer, we started seeing rabbits again. Sure enough, the little bounders got to the crocuses and tulips. Not only do they chew them down to ground level, but they pull up the bulbs of the crocuses. My arm is cramping from all the spraying of Liquid Fence I’ve done today.

Lest you animal activists out there should swoon in a rage upon reading my intent to kill or at least maim the rabbits in my yard, let me assure you that I don’t actually have it in me. Rabbits are prolific-and I mean breeding all the time prolific-breeders. They have babies like other people drink cokes. We found a little nest last year full of six or so baby bunnies. We could have killed them-it would have greatly reduced the numbers of rabbits eating our plants, but we carefully waited until they could survive, boxed them up, and released them in a field. (Although the field was across a busy road. Too bad.)

We’re building a fence, which probably won’t help, so I’ll just have to exercise my hand squeezing muscles each night before bed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

+ 9 = seventeen