Rabbits may be cute and cuddly when they're in a pet store, but when their wild counterparts move into your backyard, they aren't quite as adorable anymore. Wild rabbits are a major pest for homeowners. Here are five things you need to know about these nuisance animals.
Where do rabbits live?
Rabbits are found throughout much of the United States. They're found throughout the eastern half of the country. In the western half, they're not as widespread, but are still found in parts of the Pacific Northwest and Southwest.
Is it true that rabbits breed quickly?
Rabbits have a reputation for breeding quickly, and, unfortunately, this reputation is well deserved. If a pair of rabbits moves into your backyard, you need to be concerned that the problem will soon become a lot worse. Female rabbits can give birth to as many as 14 babies in each litter, and they can get pregnant as often as once a month. Some of those babies will survive to adulthood and the cycle will continue, and in no time at all, you'll have a serious rabbit problem on your property.
Why are rabbits pests?
Rabbits can cause a lot of problems for homeowners. They burrow into the ground to make their homes, and in large numbers, can cause a lot of damage to your yard if you live in an area with erosion-prone soil. Large numbers of rabbits also need to eat a lot of plants to survive, and, unfortunately, your lawn and the flowers in your garden are fair game. If you want to keep your yard looking its best, you need to get rid of the rabbits.
Do rabbits carry any diseases?
Rabbits, like other wild rodents, can carry a wide variety of diseases that are harmful to humans. You can get these diseases by touching an infected rabbit or by breathing in dust that is contaminated with feces or urine. Rabbits can carry tularemia, a life-threatening disease that causes problems like pneumonia or sepsis. Rabbits can also carry the bacteria that causes the plague.
How can you get rid of rabbits?
Keeping the rabbits away from their food sources may encourage them to move on. Put up fences around your gardens to keep them from eating your plants. There are also commercially available repellents that may help to keep the rabbits away. In some states, shooting the rabbits is permitted, but make sure to check your state and county regulations before attempting this.
If nuisance rabbits move into your backyard, you need to act quickly to keep them from taking over. If you aren't able to handle them by yourself, call a pest control company such as Cavanaugh's Professional Termite & Pest Services to help you reclaim your backyard.