Living In Harmony: Navigating Backyard Rabbits
By Tom Seest
At BackyardBunnyNews, we help people who want to raise rabbits and bunnies by collating information about the hare-raising experience.
If you are surrounded by backyard wildlife, there are a few things that you can do to keep them in check. For starters, don’t feed them if they’re already dependent on you. Instead, spread out their food over a large area so that they can forage freely and don’t have to depend on you to get enough nutrients. This will avoid sabotaging their natural instincts and prevent them from becoming overly dependent on you.
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If you have backyard wildlife, you may want to try natural ways to feed them. For example, you can plant a small garden and let your rabbits eat the flowers in it. But you must remember that you should not put out fresh flowers just for your rabbits. Wild rabbits prefer living in wooded or shrubby areas. You can put up a brush pile at the edge of your yard if you want to attract them to your yard. Plants like weeping willows are also good for your backyard wildlife rabbits. These plants have high protein content and are a great source of forage.
Another healthy food for your rabbits is vegetables. You should provide them with vegetables at least once a day. Dark leafy greens like romaine lettuce, collard greens, and beet and turnip tops are ideal. Dandelions, chard, and carrot tops are also safe to feed your rabbits.
Herbs are also good for rabbits. Try to grow some that have high fiber content. This will help their digestive system. A low-fiber diet can cause digestive problems in your rabbits. Also, it will boost your rabbit’s activity level, which is essential to avoiding boredom and behavioral problems.
Fruits are also good for rabbits. But keep in mind that they have different taste preferences and can lead to diarrhea if they are unfamiliar with them. So, before you feed your rabbits, make sure to find out what they like. Some rabbits like carrots, but make sure to measure the amount you give them each time.
Another great way to feed backyard wildlife is by planting a garden. Rabbits like to eat all kinds of plants, from wildflowers to weeds. During warmer months, they love to eat panic grass and plantain. They also enjoy dandelion, crabgrass, and ragweed. They also enjoy fruits, vegetables, and even ornamental flowers.
Rabbits are notoriously prolific. They can have several litters of four to seven kits per year. During times when food and water are scarce, however, their birth rate will decrease. They also have short life spans and short gestation periods (30 days). Their mortality rate largely depends on food availability, predator presence, and weather stability.
It’s imperative to avoid giving your backyard wildlife rabbits access to poisonous plants. This includes weeds, bulbs, and many common garden plants. It’s also important to keep poisonous plants out of areas where the rabbits can graze. There are several ways to do this.
A common example of a poisonous plant is ragwort. This is a popular flowering plant that is highly toxic to rabbits and other animals. The plant contains large amounts of amygdalin, a compound that is toxic to most mammals. Even small amounts can cause problems for small rabbits.
Toxic plants are bad not only for wildlife but also for humans. Poisonous plants contain toxins that can irritate the digestive tract and cause symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting. The amount of toxicity varies between species and parts of the plant. Woody Nightshade and Deadly Nightshade are two different species of poisonous plants. While Woody Nightshade is more attractive, Deadly Nightshade is much more poisonous.
You can keep your plants safe by using repellents to prevent deer, rabbits, and other animals from eating them. You can use ammonium soaps to spray on the leaves or hot sauce with capsaicin to prevent rabbits from eating them. Using repellents will only repel them for a short time, so you should reapply them often. Remember to alternate between chemical and smell-based deterrents for the best results.
Some plants can be deadly for rabbits. Hemlock, for example, can cause death in a matter of hours. Not only is hemlock deadly for rabbits, but it’s also toxic for humans, so avoid giving it to your wildlife. A small amount of hemlock can cause fatal symptoms such as vomiting, drooling, and seizures. A rabbit that eats the plant may become unconscious and die within a half-hour.
A physical barrier is the best way to keep backyard wildlife rabbits from accessing plants, vegetables, and lawns. This barrier should be at least six inches below ground level and two feet high. It should also be anchored to the ground. Electric net fencing is another option for temporary control of rabbits around garden areas.
Rabbits can’t jump over fences more than two feet off the ground, so make sure that the fence is no higher than 26 inches high. Use a woven wire mesh that’s at least three to six inches deep. Then, stake it every four feet to keep rabbits from digging through. You can also install bracing around the fencing to prevent the rabbits from nibbling on it. Also, remove or modify any shrubbery with low branches. Tall plants will also keep out rabbits.
Rabbits are notoriously hardy creatures, but if you don’t want them to move into your garden, you can put up a barrier. You can install electric fencing or hardware cloth. Or, you can install floating row covers that will block the animals at night. It’s important to remember that rabbits prefer young and delicate fruits and vegetables. They also avoid strong-smelling flowers and herbs.
The most reliable way to keep rabbits out of your garden is to install a rabbit-proof fence. This fence doesn’t have to be tall; a two-foot high fence is good enough. Chicken wire is a good, economical solution, but if you don’t want to spend a lot of money, hardware cloth is a better choice.
Installing hardware cloth around your flower beds can prevent rabbits from getting into your bulbs. Place the mesh parallel to the soil surface, and it should extend at least one foot beyond the flower beds. Another option is chicken wire, which is two to four feet tall and can limit movement of the animals.
Whether you’re trying to keep rabbits out of your garden or simply protect your home and family, you need to take precautions. While rabbits can be adorable, they can be a huge nuisance. Despite their cute appearance, they have a nasty habit of nibbling on your plants. For instance, rabbits love to nibble on young plants and seedlings. They can also get into garden sheds and nest inside.
Be sure to read our other related stories at BackyardBunnyNews to learn more about raising bunnies and rabbits.