Why are there so many rabbits this year?
The rabbit population seems to be running rampant this year! It could be due to the extra precipitation we’ve been having. More water leads to more growth in vegetation and creates more food for these furry little guys. If their food is abundant, the number of litters will increase. On average, rabbits have about 2-6 litters per year, each containing up to 6 babies. Rabbits use grass and weeds not only to provide food, but also as shelter for themselves and their young. These furry friends spend the entirety of their life on less than 10 acres total, so there’s a good chance that once they’ve made a home out of your lawn, without deterrent, they’re here to stay.
How Rabbits damage your lawn
Typically, rabbit damage can create big problems for yards. They gnaw plants down to the root and concentration of urine can create brown spots in lawns. If you’ve been noticing spots in your yard that have been suspiciously mowed down and are beginning to brown, our furry friends are likely the culprit. Rabbits love to eat grass, and will munch it all the way down to the crown. This puts a lot of stress on the plant. If areas of your lawn have been damaged, the best thing to do is to fence off the area and keep it well watered and fertilized to help it grow back. The rabbits don’t eat the root system, so your lawn has a great chance of coming back.
Getting rid of Rabbits in your lawn
Although getting rid of established rabbit families is difficult, it isn’t impossible. Rabbits love anything that provides shelter, like low-to-the-ground shrubs, bushes, and taller grass. By eliminating areas they can hide, it makes their lives more difficult. Trim shrubs and bushes, put chicken wire below porches and elevate any decorative garden pieces that may be offering them refuge. You can also cut off their food supply. Fence off gardens, making sure fence openings are smaller than a rabbit’s head and dug 6 inches into the ground so they can’t go underneath. Spraying different odors on your plants, like capsaicin (pepper extract), castor oil, ammonium salts, or predator urine can also help! However, it must be reapplied after every watering or rain. It’s also smart to utilize your pets. Get your dogs to chase the rabbits, or let your cat outside to be the fearsome predator they are!
Rabbit damage can be very frustrating. It creates brown spots in your lawn and can ruin a garden if it goes unchecked. However, with the right prevention and proper lawn care, you can get the furry nuisances to leave your lawn alone!