Rabbits can be a significant pest to landowners – both farmers and domestic households suffer when rabbits ravage crops, eat plants and make potentially dangerous burrows that can cause injury to people and livestock.
Even if rabbits aren’t causing you particular concern, as a landowner, you must ensure they are controlled under the Pests Act 1954.
It will probably be obvious if you have a rabbit infestation, as you are likely to see the destruction they leave behind – a network of rabbit holes, droppings and evidence of grazing on crops, plants and tree bark.
The best time to control rabbits
Rabbits breed mainly through spring and summer, when it is almost impossible to keep up with the rapidly growing population. The only option for rabbit control during this time is shooting.
Now breeding season is over and vegetation has died down, it is the ideal time to control rabbit infestations. We can use a variety of methods to quickly and effectively control rabbits, including:
We use ferrets to drive rabbits out of their burrows, where they are then trapped by nets. This is a highly effective approach which becomes possible in the autumn and winter months when there is less vegetation around the burrows.
Long nets can be used in conjunction with ferrets, or at night. The nets are placed in between the rabbit’s burrows and feeding grounds so that when they come out to feed, or are driven out by ferrets, they are quickly caught in the nets.
Gassing uses toxic chemicals, so it must be administered correctly by qualified pest controllers to ensure it does not affect other wildlife such as badgers.
In summer, shooting is the only effective method of control, however it can be used in conjunction with other methods in the winter months. At Helliar our highly trained staff hold full firearms certificates – required for shooting rabbits safely.
Need help with rabbit control?
If you have a problem with rabbits, get in touch. We offer a discreet service, plus we can also provide guidance on continuing to keep your land rabbit free.