Tuesday, 10 February 2009

What to do...what to do.....

Dear Mr and Mrs Rabbit......It is with much regret that I am writing to complain about your behaviour.
Parties every night are not an option in this garden. A few bunnies for tea, ok I can deal with that, but when numbers are above ten it is getting out of hand.....

I can accept a nibble here, a nibble there but taking the bark from my shrubs.......and damaging my trees are just not on......


And the digging.....what are you looking for, please tell me, maybe I can find it for you????
And this morning I could not believe my eyes......
you have started digging up my bee plants........there is a limit rabbits......
and you have overstepped the mark.......
It is with much regret but I have no option........Nella will be out on patrol more often. I know you don't like her but what choice do I have. Bees are endangered, you are not. Bees pollenate my trees and flowers, you eat them......are you getting my drift??
I will give you a couple of days to think about this.......I hope we can come to an amicable agreement.
I would not like to see a sad ending to our friendship.......Yours sincerely.....wildlife gardener.......



I have indeed got a huge amount of rabbit damage, also the ice, snow and heavy rain of the last two months have taken its toll on the garden.........I shall be blogging here and there....but will be spending a lot of time in the garden when I can.....

I can't wait for the warmer weather to be able to sort this mess out......

Stay well, stay happy........









47 comments:

Dawny P said...

Ohh what naughty little critters!!! I do understand your predicament Cheryl, and hopefully Nella will sort them out. They will soon get the message that they have worn out your welcome mat lol xxx. Funnily enough yesterday I saw one in our garden - just came hopping down the path as cheeky as you like. I've never seen one here before. And later on I saw a flash of something running across the very bottom of the garden but it was too far away and too quick for me to see what it was. It could have been the same rabbit possibly, I don't know. I am now starting to long to feel the warm sun on my face again instead of the harsh chilly wind. There is washing all over the house cos it just will not dry outside, so it's radiators and dryer - I hate it. I love tho smell the fresh air on my clothes. Shouldn't moan considering what those poor souls in Oz are having to contend with. Hope all is well xxxx

Tricia said...

Oh what a dilemma you have Cheryl. I know the havoc one rabbit caused in my mother's garden - let along the numbers you have visiting.

Cyndee Greene said...

Oh my...I love rabbits...just as I love deer...AND I have come out to find my garden ravaged by deer...could they atleast not wait for me to enjoy seeing them...could they not invite me to their brunch...
Oh Cheryl I am indeed not making light of this because I know the devastation of coming out to find everything eaten down...just beside myself to have everything so full & then gone....
My dream is to someday have a fenced garden for me & a garden for them...I really don't know whether this is possible or not...but I can dream....

beckie said...

Oh dear! I do't blame you for writig a letter of complaint. They are taking advantage of your kindness and generosity and you are right to have Nella step up her patrols.

I know you must be dishearted to see all the damage in your lovely gardens. You have had your share of bad weather and now those destructive rabbits. I suppose those are the risks of a gardener, but still hard to take.

Your flowers look so lovely though. Must make you see spring whenever you see them. Enjoy them and and don't work too hard!

Cheryl said...

Hi Dawny.....rabbits are so cute to look at but do so much damage when you have large numbers....
the problem is they are destroying the habitat that I have landscaped for the wildlife that is struggling....

I to long for warmer days....the last year has been dreadful here...dull wet windy cold snow...we have had so little sunshine......but you are right we should not complain.....there are lots far worse of.....

Cheryl said...

Hi Tricia....I can honestly say this is a nightmare.....I havn't the heart to hurt them but they are destroying bee bird and butterfly habitat.....I have no answers, to be honest....

Cheryl said...

Hi Cyndee....I like rabbits to, especially the kittens when they first arrive.....that is the trouble....

But it is so hard to watch all the work that I have done for the bees etc being destroyed.

Cheryl said...

Hi Beckie......It is so hard....we have had torrential rain for 24 hours, so the garden is waterlogged as well.......the rabbits have really made a mess of many areas....I have a lot to do in the garden.....I will let nature sort out the problem....Mr Fox would be great at this time but he is not around at the moment......but I have seen a stoat, I am hoping he likes the garden and comes visit.......

Wendy said...

Hmmmm - our earth seems to be going through some strange weather patterns.
Gardening should be fun and relaxing, not frustrating.

I wonder if you build an owl house or somehow attracted hawks to your sanctuary, as preditors. Would this work? I also hate the thought of hurting those adorable bunnies, but they are doing so much damage, it's upsetting the echosystem. I know you mentioned, Mr. Fox, not being around. I wonder what other preditors would do? This seems to call for emergency measures.
Your other creatures are in danger. I hope I'm not sounding too harsh - but I truly do understand what's happening in your garden.

Hope you can sort this out soon.
Lots of hugs and sunshine,

Mimi said...

I'm with Wendy... things are a bit bizarre around here as well. It has rained for about a week (this is NOT wet season) and mealybugs are eating everyone's plants. Somehow, the ladybugs that eat them are no where to be found. Your letter is too cute. I'm glad Nella is of use in this endeavor.

NCmountainwoman said...

Well, the can't say they have not been warned. Hope the weather is nice so that you can work in the garden while Nella does the rabbit patrol.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

If this stern talk doesn't do the trick you could always resort to fried rabbit with milk gravy and mashed potatoes for dinner. ;)

Morning Glories in Round Rock said...

We gardeners are always at odds with the weather, wildlife, or weeds it seems. Maybe some rabbit food to keep them too full to munch on your trees and plants until Spring? I hope Nella is as serious about her duties as Bocephus is about squirrel patrol here.

Rose said...

Oh, Cheryl, I do hope the rabbit family reads this letter and sees the error of their ways. They are really taking advantage of your hospitality! I know how much you love all wildlife, so the rabbits had to do considerable damage for you to be this stern with them. I think putting Nella on patrol more often is a great idea; even little Coconut is a great deterrent to the rabbits here. Even if he can't catch them, at least they think twice about coming back.

The rains--and storms--are heading our way, too. I hope yours are at an end soon so you can get into the garden to work.

Gail said...

Cheryl, I never knew the rabbits were so badly behaved in your garden...they can certainly do a great deal of damage. Send Nella out there to protect the bee plants! But if it's any consolation...your photos are beautiful!

gail

Nature Nut said...

So cute and creative!

Cheryl said...

Hi Wendy.....the weather here is far colder than usual......when it rains it is continuous....climate change, as far as I am concerned, is here....
Sparrowhawks do come to the garden but would only take the kittens, it they had the opportunity....
The fox or a stoat are the best for keeping rabbit numbers down....

I shall keep you posted.....

Cheryl said...

Hi Mimi....the weather is strange....I spoke to someone in Thailand and they were saying it was colder than they had ever known it....they were wearing jumpers.....

Interesting re the ladybirds.....

Cheryl said...

Hi nmmountainwoman....well you do have to give them a fair chance...lol

Cheryl said...

Lisa....you must come and spend some time with Mr P....he loved your comment and tends to agree with you!!!!

Cheryl said...

Hi Morningglories.....I have put food out to try to stop the situation....they eat that and my plants etc....

Nella is by nature a rabbit and rat hunter....it is in her breed.....so yes she will take it very seriously......

Cheryl said...

Dear Rose....as you know I do not like to hurt anything....to be honest I am quite upset about the situation......the rabbits are by nature gentle creatures, and I always take these things into account....
BUT they are out of control and the damage is really bad.....not just the odd tree, many of them...in fact I could make a long list of damage...I will have to put lots of netting up etc...time consuming and expensive......
and it will not look too good....
but that is wildlife gardening, it has its drawbacks....

Cheryl said...

Thank you Gail.....the rabbits are very badly behaved....I am glad you like the photos and yes it is some consolation......

Terry said...

I'm having the same problem with our rabbits this winter! I think the rabbit damage has been worse because the winter has been harder, making it difficult for them to find food. There sure will be a lot of pruning and cleaning up going on around here come spring!

Cheryl said...

Hi Terry....glad I am not the only one....at one point I felt I was the only person with a rabbit problem....hope yours have not done too much damage......

Anna said...

No bunnies here Cheryl although they occasionally make forays onto the allotment site. I am forever trying to thwart squirrels who are intent on digging up my bulbs :) We seemed to have escaped the worst of the winter weather here. I hope that your garden soon dries out and that you can be out there enjoying it :)

Q said...

Dear Cheryl,
The rabbits MUST leave the bee plants alone! I also draw the line...hopefully your fox and stoat will arrive and do some population thinning. It is very difficult to keep the balance. You were very nice to let the rabbits know enough is enough!
I often have too many rabbits too.
The netting of seedlings is a bother...
With rabbits I agree with you, natural preditors are the best solution.
Nella can do much to help too.
Climate change arrived in my gardens two years ago. I am still suffering....
I am always looking for balance. It is very difficult.
Love seeing your spring flowers, they are so pretty.
May you have some drying out time.
We are fast approaching the busy time in the gardens. Soon the bees will return. Slowly the wheel turns.
Stay dry!
Sherry

Cheryl said...

Dear Sherry......I really am unhappy to be in this position....I would rather nature take care of the problem, for me this is how it should be. Nella will chase the rabbits, they will not like this....I am hoping they will leave the gardens and go back to where they came from.....

what to do....what to do.....

The weather is so changeable I cannot keep up with it......my lavenders have definately suffered and will have to be dug up.......

I do hope that the bees have survived the extreme cold this year.....spring will tell all.......

Cheryl said...

Dear Anna....it must be wonderful to garden without rabbits....plant whatever you want.....oh joy....

Glad you missed the very cold snap.......enjoy your garden...........

Cathy said...

Cheryl - Don't rule that you might have a groundhog munching on your plants too.

www.thequietone.net

Cheryl said...

Hi Cathy.....as far as I aware we do not have groundhogs here....but thank you all the same for mentioning it......

Libby said...

Oh Dear, I do hope Mr & Mrs Rabbit have electricity and a computer to read your post!!!
lol!!!

marmee said...

oh dearest cheryl, what a bother. have you thought about having someone trap the rabbits and take them away. i know you have a lot. i would guess that they might be muliplying with such a good food source. oh bother!
here's to you coming up with an amazing idea to rid yourself of this problem.

Cheryl said...

Hi Marmee.....Although a couple of the rabbits live in the garden, the rest are coming from the fields......Nella is about my best option, they really do not like her being out too much....once summer is here she will be out in the garden all day and evening with me....I think things might start to change then....fingers crossed......

Yolanda Elizabet said...

Those pesky rabbits again! They are the bane of many a gardener.

Loved your letter of complaint!

Patsi said...

Funny post
-well,you know what I mean.
I wonder if you can feed them something so they'll at least stay in one area of your property and leave mostly everything else alone.
Rabbits sure are cute!

naturewitch said...

Hi Cheryl

Those bunnies have something to answer for! I'm not sure I'd be quite as tolerant as you are. xx

CIELO said...

Oh Cheryl, what a beautiful way to explain a bad thing... Is almost as if I’m reading a story book. You, your garden and your critters have transported me to Wonderland... I'm Alice! Thanks for sharing your world...

Hugs and blessing, my dear. To be able to find contentment in everything and confront a bad situation with the right attitude is a thing of wisdom......

Hugs

Cielo

Cheryl said...

Dear Cielo.....I love the world you live ine....Alice in wonderland....may I join you??

Naturegirl said...

Cheryl: I understand about the rabbits..many of my tree barks have been nibbled away! I suppose this winter was harsh and food was limited..I know I'm feeling sorry for these little destructive fur balls!
:( ..Happy gardening..keep a watch for Peter rabbit.

Anne Tanne said...

Oh I loved this post!
I'm a lucky one, in the first years of our Belgian wildlife garden, rabits have been partying there too each and every night, and have eaten, or at least nibbled, everything we planted.
But then myxomatosis came, and decimated the rabbit population over here. Since then, our garden has 'grown up', and doesn't really suffer the occasional rabbit visit anymore.

ShySongbird said...

Hi Cheryl
Having just read of your rabbit riot it reminded me of reading some years ago how John Major's wife Norma had resorted to shooting rabbits from her bedroom window having tried many other deterrents without success. I remember being very shocked by this as I had previously perceived her to be a rather gentle retiring woman. But since being plagued by a cat killing my garden birds I found myself fantasizing about all sorts of bizarre ways of dealing with the problem! I hasten to add I could not actually harm any creature but I can understand the level of frustration which could lead to people considering such drastic measures.
I do hope your situation improves soon.

Zhakee said...

What a poetic way to talk of a rabbit problem. You must be providing them with a smorgasbord of yummy treats for so many to come hopping around.

Cheryl said...

HI Everyone....tku all for your comments re the rabbit problem.....to add insult to injury I have sprained my ankle badly, due to stumbling down a hole the rabbits had dug. It has made me smile.....I cannot believe that these gentle vegetarians have caused me so much trouble....

Nella is out chasing most days...and during the evening.....and damage at this time is at a minimum. I could not resort to hurting them, it is not in my nature......just not me......

But thank you all for dropping by.....

Miranda Bell said...

Naughty little bunnies - reminds me of Beatrix Potter stories! I think you'll have to give Brittany a go sometime as we never see any bunnies here at all - we have one hare to my knowledge that lives in the field next door - must be difficult to know what to do - hope they get the message, or maybe they'll be reading your blog...!

Betty Jo said...

Cheryl I do hope the damage can be corrected. Your garden and photos are so beautiful. ♥

Crafty Green Poet said...

I love rabbits, I had one as a pet, such lovable and loving creatures.... but in gardens they can be such menaces and yes you need to protect your plants....