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Question Where have all the Rabbits gone???!!!!!???

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Andy Wales, Sep 4, 2014.

  1. Andy Wales

    Andy Wales Donator

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    I have to say I feel a surge of both admiration and jealousy when I read some members posts here about going into fields etc on their perms and seeing loads of rabbits running about everywhere :eek:. I know that in the UK as a whole, according to official figures that the rabbit population has dropped by millions since the 60's, 70's and 80's (figures I read somewhere estimate a drop from 110-150 million to maybe 40-50 million today!). That means there are more PEOPLE in the UK than rabbits! :eek:. Looks like the old saying, "breed like rabbits" no longer applies! I would guess that this is largely due to mixi and the new disease doing the rounds and of course possibly overshooting, ahem, I mean conservation :p.

    I remember clearly when I used to go out shooting rabbits with my shotguns back then maybe 28 ish years ago, there used to be rabbits running everywhere, especially at night. I went out early one morning this week with my new Cree Ultrafire LED lamp to where I saw so many rabbits all those years ago......NOT ONE!! No eyes shining back, no white tails bobbing away from the light, nada, nil, zero!! :eek: I just can't believe it! On one part of my mates farm, seperate land (approx 250 acres) he owns a quarter mile from the "main" farm, I have not seen a single rabbit nor any sign of them, (Old warrens, tracks, runs or droppings). He has told me that on the main farm area he def sees rabbits around though not in huge numbers. I mean, why there and not on the seperate 250 acre part he owns? There's nothing wrong with it, and to me it looks like perfect rabbit country. I should have at least seen one or two surely? I haven't been over the main farm yet but, I will be going soon as I'm fed up looking in this 250 acre "dud".

    Any other members have a severe lack of rabbits in their area/perms, or like my area, hardly any at all?

    I then took a drive past many other farms/farmers fields around my area where I don't have permission (yet ;)), and shone the Cree around everywhere and didn't see one rabbit! Sorry, but I just don't understand it :confused:, what has happened/changed in the 28 years I have been away from shooting? I have to say as you've probably noticed, I'm very, very dissapointed indeed. Hence the title of this thread, "Where have all the Rabbits gone?". I don't know.......Do you?
     
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2014
  2. culcreuch

    culcreuch Donator

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    Think many of them drowned over the winter
     
  3. Andy Wales

    Andy Wales Donator

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    Are you serious? lol That's a lot of drowning in 28 years! There should be loads up in the Brecon area where you are I would have thought?
     
  4. SteveO

    SteveO Top Poster

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    I know of a place not far from me that is positively infested with them, my last estimate based on spending a whole day there was in excess of 1000 rabbits and those were the ones I could see!

    Do you think the land owner will give permission to control them! :rolleyes: They bink around on the lawns and verges less than a metre away from you without a care... soooooo frustrating!
     
  5. culcreuch

    culcreuch Donator

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    We had a lot of flooding over the winter.....and while there are some.....not as many as I would have expected :-(. I do know of a lot locally.......in the Black Mountains.......but those are not available to me :-(....part of an estate
     
  6. Andy Wales

    Andy Wales Donator

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    Yep, I can see how that would be frustrating alright! No doubt that's why there are so many there though eh? Surprised the local "poacher crew" or those who don't bother with such things as "permission to shoot" haven't been on there blasting away or using "other means" to take them :rolleyes:. I guess the landowner likes them around or he's a "Get orf moi land" type farmer eh? lol (We have a few of them around here :eek:).

    Andy :)
     
  7. Andy Wales

    Andy Wales Donator

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    Ah, you were serious lol. I wondered for a minute :D. So your perms in Brecon are almost as bad as mine then I guess :(. Not good, not good at all. I think they've all emigrated to England lol :D. What a time to get back into shooting, just when there's b****r all much around to shoot :rolleyes:.

    Oh, By the way, I was born where you now live ;).

    Andy :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2014
  8. David M

    David M Donator

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    I walk the dog around an RSPB reserve 3-4 times a week and there are rabbit scrapes and currents everywhere, you can even smell them but don't see that many, even in the evening. I got up before dawn (couldn't sleep) one morning last Summer and took the pooch down there just before sunrise, I've never seen so many rabbits in one place in my life, they bolted as soon as we were 50-100 yards away but they totalled hundreds over a mile or so stretch.

    If there's evidence about, your rabbits could well be there, but maybe you haven't looked at the right time yet, try just before dawn.. I actually prefer getting 2-4 a session personally. That amount is easy to carry and clean and keeps the freezer topped up, plus keeps it interesting each time out....:up:
     
  9. Barni

    Barni Donator

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    Indeed saw about 7 last night on a roundabout just up the road from me ! usually plenty more along the roads too. Have seen some with mixy but not too many this year. Also seen many magpies dancing around the trees next to the road and houses. Just typical..... im sure they all know we cant shoot here !!!! :mad:
     
  10. harry brown

    harry brown Banned BANNED

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    My perms have been hit quite badly by Mixi. Some areas still are okay but I bet it'll spread into those also.

    I think the reason we see so many on roundabouts and community centres etc is that they are isolated populations away from regular contact with outsiders likely to bring in any diseases into the group.
    The local council owned gym near me is plagued with them, but they appear to be a protected species as far as the council are concerned. Same as the rats at the local tip.
     
  11. mbison

    mbison Busy Member

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    I've seen not as much as a whisker on my perm. Devastating. However a lad I shoot withs garden is wick with them!
     
  12. sharpshooterpete

    sharpshooterpete Donator

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    My perm as a lot of rabbits on it and up until last week i hadnt seen any with myxi! The lady i shoot for said the land across the road has just as many rabbits but most of them have myxi and i guess it wont be long until my perm gets hit by it. A stange thing on my perm is that i dont see many full grown adult rabbits, everything i shoot tends to be 3/4 grown or less. Other than that i still have a fair few to get rid of!

    atb,

    pete.
     
  13. DR2501

    DR2501 Donator

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    The warren of the snares :D
     
  14. themadspread

    themadspread Donator

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    talk to my farmers quite regular and i agree with them that since the ban on fox hunting there numbers have hugely increased and that is why bunnie numbers are way down.this summer every time i,vebeen out for a few hrs on the bunnies i cant remeber the last time i didnt see a fox there everywhere now
     
  15. Andy Wales

    Andy Wales Donator

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    I went to my mate's main farm today at last. Although I didn't see any rabbits, I think it was the time of day I got there (10am). Tons of grey squirrels though :). Most were too far out of range for my .22 but I did try for one at around 40 yards or so........and missed! :eek: How embarrassing! Glad I was on my own lol. I had forgoten just how quickly squirrels can move around. They were darting about everywhere, hardly staying still for a split second! :eek:. I also saw a few magpies and crows, but again, all well out of range (100 yards plus a lot of them). I was trying to sneak up on them as stealthy and quietly as I could, but I couldn't quite get close enough to them without them being spooked and flying off, warning all their mates as they went :mad:. I was going to go out with the Cree early tomorrow morning, but my girlfriend reminded me I promised all week to do a load of jobs around her house that I have put off for months :rolleyes:. Darned women lol, spoiling a mans sporting fun :p. Oh well, Sunday morning it is instead. At least I now know the main farm is where it's happening or going to happen. Can't wait to go back. Roll on Sunday :D.

    Andy :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2014
  16. tombillings916

    tombillings916 Donator

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    We fly from Norwich Airport to our Offshore Platforms and the area around the airfield is alive with rabbits, only wish I had permission to shoot there but I suppose the domestic passengers would think we were cruel evil killers!
     
  17. essex sniper

    essex sniper Banned BANNED

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    The kids are back to school now so they will all be back soon lol atb
     
  18. cossy

    cossy Well-Known Member

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    first 3months I had nothing, minute they see me they'd run. Stalking didn't do much either, my mate's kept telling me patience and once u shoot ur first the rest will follow. It sure did got my first then a few weeks later got 3 but since then the last couple of weeks not seen many ( and I know I've not shot them all ) a lot have seen me, but the weather has been cloudy humid so I'm not sure if that puts them off coming out.
     
  19. kermitboy1

    kermitboy1 Banned BANNED

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    Just starting to see signs of the odd 'mixi' on some of my perms here in Essex, but otherwise up until now they seem to be doing well. KB1
     
  20. DR2501

    DR2501 Donator

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    no Watership Down fans then?

    The sports fields by my house have loads of evidence of rabbits in them but I don't think they cause enough of a problem to get me permission. I had to give up my stable permission when I sold my rifle but there were plenty there last time I went.
     

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