Just like in the cartoons, wild rabbits can damage and eat plants, vegetables, and flowers in your yard. In rare instances, they may find their way into a shed or garage and try to create a habitat. Our rabbit control products help repel and safely remove rabbits from your property, keeping your yard healthy and thriving without a call to the professionals.
A live trap suitable for trapping skunks, squirrels, and rabbits.
Rabbit Behavior, Habitat, and Food Sources
Rabbits can cause damage at any time of year. In the spring, they prefer young, growing plants, especially those in the rose and lily families. They also enjoy garden vegetables like carrots, peas, beans, lettuce, and beets, and also clover and turf grass. In the winter, rabbits gnaw on bark of young trees and shrubs to get to the green inner bark. Rabbits use natural cavities or other animals’ abandoned burrows to take shelter in bad weather. In other times, they shelter in brush piles, hedges, and shaded, heavily landscaped areas. Areas with plenty of moisture are especially attractive to rabbits.
Rabbit Damage Identification
As with any form of animal control, damage from rabbits must be correctly identified in order to properly control rabbits. Cleanly clipped stems on tender shoots and small, chiseled gnaw marks on the bark of trees. The clearest sign of rabbit lawn damage is actually seeing the little critters hopping around your garden and yard.
How to Get Rid of Rabbits
Exclusion is the best and simplest option for keeping rabbits out your garden and controlling rabbit damage. Here’s what you can do:
Chicken wire with one-inch holes makes an effective barrier. A two-foot tall chicken wire fence, about 4 inches into the ground, around your garden.
Use ¼ inch wire hardware cloth (heavy-duty galvanized wire screen) to protect young trees. Bury cloth into the ground a few inches, leaving a two-inch space around the trees and high enough to be out of the rabbits’ reach.
You can also create a fence around your entire yard. If you have an existing fence, place chicken wire around the bottom, so rabbits can’t dig in.
Habitat modification will add to your exclusion methods by reducing shelter and water sources for the animals, making your yard less attractive to rabbits and other critters.
As with many pest control methods, removing brush piles, leaf litter, tall weeds and grass will reduce harborage for not only rabbits but also many insect pests and rodents. Making your yard neat and bare will greatly reduce unwanted pests in your space.
Remove thick vegetation around newly planted trees and around the foundation of your home.
Drain any excess water (puddles or open reservoirs) if possible.
Rabbit Repellents and Rabbit Trapping
Repellents and trapping can provide temporary control if exclusion and habitat modification is not working effectively.
Repellent products, usually containing garlic oil, putrid egg solids, and hot peppers, can be applied to plants without damaging them. These products will make the plants unattractive to rabbits (and deer and other nuisance animals) but do not provide protection to new growth.
Scare methods – like tin foil, scarecrows, flashing lights, and loud noises – will only work for a short time, as the rabbits get used to these items.
There are no registered pesticides or poisons for used on rabbits.
Trapping can be very effective in reducing rabbit populations, especially if your lawn and garden have become overrun with them. Live rabbit traps are generally humane traps, and there is a lot of information available on how to trap a rabbit. If you choose to purchase rabbit traps, make sure you get the proper size and the proper rabbit trap bait.
You can bait your rabbit traps with the food rabbits like to eat, like most vegetables.
Remember: every state has different rules on trapping and removing wildlife, and often times it is illegal to kill the animal without a permit or license. Call your local extension to find out the laws in place in your area.