How to Keep Rabbits Off Your Garden or Land
Domestic rabbits are common family pets but wild rabbits are quite different. Destroying your land and passing fleas on to your pets in the process, they can be a real nightmare. In the summer they’ll thoroughly enjoy your flower beds, weeds, grass, leaves, fruits, roots and shoots – perfect for a growing bunny’s appetite – and in the winter they’ll tuck into tree bark, twigs and bushes (they’re not all that fussy!).
If you’ve got a headache over the state of your garden or land due to a fluffle of rabbits, then read on to find out how to prevent rabbits from eating plants and tips for repelling rabbits.
Signs you have rabbits in your area
If you’ve had rabbits in your garden, you will notice:
- Clean-cut damage (rabbits enjoy fresh new shoots and ground-level plants)
- Piles of small brown, round droppings
- Tufts of fur
- Fresh holes, upturned soil
- Gnaw marks around the bottom of tree trunks
- Fleas on your pets
The problems with having wild rabbits on your land
The primary issue green-fingered individuals will have with wild rabbits is that any edible vegetation in their gardens will likely be destroyed and let’s face it, gardening and planting new flowers takes a lot of time and is expensive! What’s more, rabbits rapidly produce young – hence the common phrase that’s thrown around – breeding like rabbits. They can have between 3-6 litters a year and between 3-6 babies in each, if they were to reach their full potential, one single mother could have up to 36 offspring in just one year. So as you can imagine, that many rabbits could cause havoc in your garden.
The laws of controlling rabbits on your land
You may or may not be aware that you must obey the law when it comes to controlling the number of rabbits on your grounds, especially if you have large estates and business land. This is because rabbits can damage crops, pastures, hedges, banks and more – so as you can imagine, if the number of rabbits in your area gets too high, there’s a chance of them causing chaos to your business or ones close by.
You must stop rabbits from causing problems by erecting rabbit-proof fencing – if you fail to do so, you can get prosecuted. They can also be a health and safety problem if they’re sitting on footpaths, as it’s likely they’ll create a trip hazard.
Rabbit control methods: how to prevent rabbits on your land
Below you will find some tips and advice for repelling wild rabbits – from simple chicken wire preventatives to professional solutions that’ll deter those wild rabbits.
- Chicken wire: If you’ve recently planted fresh bulbs or seeds, try covering them with chicken wire in the shape of a dome. The drawback is that chicken wire is not an aesthetically pleasing addition to the garden and this still won’t deter them completely.
- Plant foliage rabbits don’t like: According to experts, wild rabbits are choosy when it comes to yarrow, ivy, lavender, catnip, holly and bee balm – these are the few plants they won’t eat. Apparently, rabbits do not enjoy foliage that has strong scents, prickles or tough leaves and will avoid anything that oozes a thick sap. The drawback with this method is that you may not like these plants and they might not live well amongst your favourites.
- Dogs and cats: If you have pets, let them outside when you see rabbits in your garden or land. Chances are, this will scare them away and if you do it enough, it’s likely they will learn to relocate and find a safer place to feed and shelter. Not everyone has pets and if your cat or dog does catch a rabbit, it might be a messy and unsightly thing to come home to.
- Garden fencing: Check your fencing for any holes or burrows underneath it. If you see any holes, replace panels and fill in the burrows – for further rabbit prevention – place slabs or large rocks around the perimeter of your fence, this will make it difficult for them to burrow under your fencing. This can be a very expensive option and recurring costs such as repairs and maintenance might end up being more hassle than it is worth.
- Reduce nesting opportunities: If you’ve seen rabbits nesting in your land or back garden, you’ll have to modify their habitat by either blocking off the area or by removing dense, low vegetation and any piles of wood or leaves that they might like to hide in. Although this will keep your garden looking fresh and clean, you will have to do this on a regular basis and won’t be 100% effective as it’s likely there will be rogue rabbits, ready to pick at your garden.
- Repellents: Prevent rabbits from eating your plants by making your own repellents. You can do this by mixing garlic and chilli powder with water and dishwashing liquid into a spray bottle. Spray this mixture on their most favourite parts of your outdoor space and the smell/taste will encourage them to take their eating habits elsewhere. This is not always effective and can take away from the lovely, natural smells of rose, lavender and other flowers in your gardens.
- Install rabbit fencing: The most reliable and effective form of rabbit deterrent is by hiring pest controllers to install rabbit fencing. This is specially designed to block rabbits from your land and is difficult for them to circumvent, particularly when installed by a professional.
- Rabbit control services: In addition to the above rabbit fencing services, you can hire pest control services to remove rabbits from your land in a variety of ways, including laying traps, setting gas, and hunting them with rifles and ferrets. This is particularly effective for reducing numbers of wild rabbits in your location if the problem is severe. The benefit of hiring pest control services is that they can assess the most effective solutions for your land.
Unfortunately, the only real way to ensure you’re pest-free is to turn to alternatives that the real pest experts can provide. At Pest Defence we have over 25 years of experience within the industry and have helped countless domestic and commercial customers get rid of their pests, quickly and effectively. For more information or to schedule in our services – call today. We’re fully qualified and accredited and offer a same day emergency response.