Catchy title, yes?
When we bought our house and 2 hectares (c 5 acres) 2 years ago, the guy we bought it from used to keep rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus) and hares. They are free range – the entire property has a rabbit & fox proof fence buried in concrete around the border.
It’s nice to watch them frolicking around – especially the hares – but, rabbits being rabbits we now have quite a lot of them. We try to keep weeds around, and water some of the grass, but it’s hot hot hot here, and hasn’t rained for about 10 weeks (and isn’t likely to for at least another 6), so food for them is becoming a problem. They are solving this by eating our trees, shrubs, flowers – just about anything. And, rabbits being rabbits, even if they don’t like something, they’ll destroy it anyway, just to kill it in the hope that something they do like will grow there – smart chaps, rabbits.
This is Portugal, so I’m supposed to go and buy a shot gun and shoot them. But I don’t kill things, and, when we moved in, I went to all the rabbits and told them they were safe from human activity on our land.
Leaving us with a problem.
Our cats used to catch the odd one or two small ones, but they seemed to have stopped.
I dressed in a rabbit suit and tried to do a “pied piper” to lead them through the gate, but they didn’t get it.
The eagles fly overhead, but I’ve never seen one catch a rabbit.
One of the culprits
So, after much research and development, I’ve built a rabbit trap, which I present here in case someone might find it useful. It’s not exactly “fine woodworking”, which is why I haven’t posted it under projects.
Basically there’s a sliding door which, through a string mechanism, is released when a creature knocks the supporting stick that projects into the inside.
I bait mine with windfall apples, since they didn’t seem to like the carrots we bought specially.
I’m now averaging about 1 every 2 days – just before bed we check the trap and release the captive into the wild, with a few rudimentary survival instructions. We don’t have much that’s green but there’s quite a lot of scrubland around outside for food (not to mention people’s vegetable plots – sorry about that)
Scrap MDF from the local DIY store, and screws.
-- "Do not speak – unless it improves on silence." --- "Following the rules and protecting the regulations is binding oneself without rope."