How to get rid of a Rabbit in the Garden

by teddletonmr

Need to learn how to get rid of the Rabbit destroying your garden before it drives you crazy,

Before we get started, I believe it important to understand. This is no storybook Easter bunny, causing all the fuss. Oh no, any of the domesticated breeds we buy at the local pet store, like the cute cuddly Lops, Rex, American Chinchilla, or even the huge Flemish Giant. These trusting Easter bunny type critters are far too easy to catch when need be.
However, we do have a serious problem with, is the Easter bunny’s wild country cousins. The long eared, cotton tailed, garden plant munching dastardly rabbits invading our gardens. We find making themselves at home in our landscape beds, flower and vegetable gardens. Dining on all our tender green beans, bib lettuce, broccoli, and all the sweet smelling blooms they choose to nibble on, depriving us of our tasty fruits and vegies we labor long and hard in hopes of enjoying come harvest time.
This bugs bunny, Elmer Fudd type relationship we have going on has us desperately asking, How to get rid of a Rabbit in the garden without harming the wild hair.

Rabbit in the vegetable garden
Rabbit in the vegetable garden

The best rabbit baits

fresh vegetables By now, we are all painfully aware, rabbits are ravenous herbivores. They like nothing more than to feast on our sweet fresh fruits, vegetables, and flowers in our landscape beds and vegetable gardens. This is where we as Elmer Fudd must take advantage of the situation and use bugs’ favorite foods to bate the rascally rabbit.

 

apple slices ● Apples, cut into small wedges.

● Sweet peas, left in the pods.

● Tomatoes, cut into small wedges.

fresh strawberries ● Strawberries freshly plucked from the vine ripe and juicy.

● Sweet smelling flowers

● Green beans, their blooms, and foliage.

baby spinich plant ● Sweet young tender leaf lettuce, spinach, and herbs.

 

Rather than make a long list of what rabbits find tasty in our lawn and gardens, suffice it to say use what the little furry critters are helping themselves too, in your vegetable and flower gardens. As that will surely be the best bait for the troublesome wild cottontail rabbits in your garden.

Tips for baiting a rabbit
Tips for baiting a rabbit

Setting-up a rabbit trap

 Three important things to consider when selecting the best rabbit trap location

great horned owl 1. Cottontail rabbits are without question a timid, cautious and elusive little furry critter. With good reason, you see they taste good and every predator in the community, cats, foxes, coyotes, hawks, and let us not forget the wise ole owl, enjoy a tasty cottontail rabbit for dinner.

Ok, I know what some of you are thinking and for that reason, I feel it necessary to remind you. For those that themselves enjoy a tasty rabbit dinner. The spring and summer months is not a good time of year for we humans to harvest and eat wild cottontail rabbits. The little rascally rabbits, Carrie potentially nasty parasites to we humans, and let us not forget, are breeding like rabbits.

rabbits in the garden 2. Unlike bugs’ bunny of cartoon fame, your typical bunny thumper does his or her best to stay hidden from the view of these predators. Following rabbit runs hidden in ditches, fences, and thickets. Especially when traveling from their rabbit hole, nest or den site to the smorgasbord our vegetable gardens provide these rascally rabbits.

3. Looking for, recognizing, and discovering the location of these bunny travel corridors is an extremely important bit of information we should have. Simply put, it is much easier to catch a rabbit along familiar rabbit runs, than trying to lure the cottontail rabbits somewhere they are not familiar, there by comfortable going.

The best rabbit trap
The best rabbit trap

The best rabbit traps for the gardener

rabbit box trap 1. Box trap, a live catch box trap for rabbits generally speaking, is a homemade trap made using bits of scrap lumber or plywood left over from one of those other DIY projects. After it lies around the garage or storage shed, allowed to weather a bit, scrap lumber takes on a nice patina, and does not need painting or staining to camouflage the bright new shiny appearance of new wood. Pick-up the plans you need to build your own wood box trap online at Amazon.com.     

  Havahart rabbit trap 2. Havahart live catch cage traps are a great choice for someone that does not want to or have the time to build a wood box trap. The Havahart is made of a wire material that makes it easy to see what is in the trap, easy to set and open when you need to release the captive critter. You never know, it just might be that honoree ole, tomcat. You know the one that keeps getting into the trash and driving your dog crazy.

Before you purchase and set the first trap, and go about catching your rabbit. Make sure you are not in violation of any city, state, or federal hunting and trapping laws applicable in your neighborhood.

Traps & Tactics

How to trap and catch a rabbit

1. Build or purchase yourself the best live catch box trap for your particular situation. Building your own with a young person will absolutely be a fun, learning experience for both yourself and the young person, or persons.

 Havahart rabbit trap 2. Select the best location to set your rabbit trap in or around the garden along the rabbits travel corridors. Next to a fence, hedgerow, or ditch row where the bunnies trail enters and leaves your garden is a good place to start. The trapper’s bible contains more tips that are helpful and trapping tricks to catching rabbits than space allows here, for the best price and availability, follow the link for the trapper’s bible to Amazon.com.

3. With your rabbit trap in hand, and the best trap location selected. It is time to set and bait the trap with only the freshest, tastiest bait, rabbits in your garden cannot resist. Keep in mind, old nasty and rotten baits will only attract possums, raccoons, or quite possibly Mr. Peppy LA pooh, in other words, an odoriferous skunk.

Remember, when you catch a rabbit or other small animal in your trap, release it in an area several miles away from your garden, where the critter can live happily ever after, and you feel better with its relocation. After all, chances are there will be more than one rabbit to catch in the garden.

Enjoy a rabbit free garden

Happy Gardener After reading, this article how to get rid of a Rabbit in the garden there is one more important thing to remember. Before baiting, setting a trap and catching the problem rabbits. We need to locate a place where we can relocate our cotton-tailed friends. After all, we would not want to relocate our captured mischievous cottontail, to a fellow gardeners garden, now would we? Enjoy a rabbit free garden, Mike   

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Updated: 03/21/2012, teddletonmr
 
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teddletonmr on 05/30/2013

Ah, yes the ole tomcat remedy. I understand an energetic tomcat is a much-misunderstood predator that rather enjoys controlling unwanted rabbits in the garden for sport. The mighty tomcat has the reputation of dispatching a munching bunny in short order to be sure. However, unlike its scat, the tomcat doesn’t cover-up his homicidal deeds. Whereas the noble bird of prey waste not, hunting only to nourish it’s body.
I wonder, is it possible to train a tomcat to leave the birds alone? Thanks for the suggestion Frank.
Be well, Mike :)

frankbeswick on 05/30/2013

When Queen Victoria beseeched the Duke of Wellington as to what could be done to be rid of sparrows in the Crystal Palace, his answer was " Sparrowhawks, Ma.am."

My answer to beg munching rabbits is a tomcat.

teddletonmr on 05/29/2013

Hey, Katie I know what you must be going through, while looking over my patch of green beans, weeding and the like. I noticed the tell tail sign of the bunny’s munching on my tender young bean plants. Actually, one of the furry little critters all but caused me to soil my shorts, as it sprang from under the leaves of the bean plants I found myself huddled over.

katiem2 on 05/27/2013

I've already noticed somethings been chewing on my plants, those rascally rabbits

teddletonmr on 07/17/2012

Hey Katie, best of luck with your vegetable garden, with the hot dry summer we are having, those pesky rabbits are looking for tasty veggies that provide them with not only a tasty meal, shade and moisture keeping them from dehydrating .

katiem2 on 07/17/2012

Had to come back for a refresher course on getting rabbits to stay out of my garden. With this dry season I need as much protection from my precious veggies as possible. The rabbits are coming out of the wood work. Thanks for the tips on rabbit repelling...

teddletonmr on 03/23/2012

@PaulGoodman67, good to hear from you. Hate to hear about the rabbit problem. Using nets and fencing to try and keep the rabbits from eating your wifes garden plants is a common practis.
Around our garden the kids can never seem to keep the garden gate closed and the little furry critters simply hop right through the open gate. While the little critters, the rabbits burrow under the neting.
Be well and enjoy the sunshine state, Mike .

PaulGoodman67 on 03/23/2012

Great article! We have problems with rabbits coming in and eating my wife's plants. She's had to use netting and fencing to keep them off, but your trapping ideas look good!

teddletonmr on 03/21/2012

Hey Katie, good to hear from you and your use of human hair to repel rabbits from the garden.
I know a gardening friend in my neighborhood that gave it a try a couple of years ago with a whitetail deer and rabbit problem he was having.
The deer was tearing down his corn and the rabbits were in the fresh greens.
He went to a local barber shop and, where the barber was happy to give him a trash bag full of hair, he hoped would repel the critters from eating his veggies.
It did not work for him for some unknown reason, that is not to say it would not for someone else. Many things work most of the time, while others never seem to work at all. That is just the way gardening goes.
@Katiem2 thanks again for sharing your insightful comments. Mike .

2uesday on 03/21/2012

Thank you for the idea, it is worth a try as they have ruined some of the crops in the past.

Hi Kate, in forestry sometimes they do use highly scented bars of soap near young tree saplings to keep the wild deer away from them. Not sure how well that would work in a garden to deter rabbits though.


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