Animal Control: Those Rascally Rabbits

They are cute.  They are cuddly.  They are eating everything in the garden.

I had noticed a plant or two looking chewed by something bigger than the leaf cutter ants or the cabbage worms a few weeks ago.  It wasn’t much at the time, more of an annoyance.

Then the rains came and while I was working I noticed foot prints..lots of footprints.  I started realizing that my annoyance could be turning into a full scale problem quickly.   I started researching rabbit controls like crazy.

I tried a trap that I found behind a storage unit.  It was by a company called, Havahart, which deals in humane pest control.  I bought some rabbit food and set the trap and waited.  The next day, nothing.  The next, nothing.  I looked at the trap and noticed that it was sprung but didn’t close.  And all my rabbit food was gone. Rabbits 1 Me 0

So I bought an owl.

Not a real one but one that I can stick on a pole and seem ominous to those little critters.  The only downside that I see to this, is that I have to make it seem like it is “moving” by taking it from one location to another every few days.  I may need to purchase another one since the farm is quite large and the owl can only stare ominously in one direction.

Step 2 is put down a liquid repellant.

I know it says Deer Off but if you look closely you can see that cute little critter we have been talking about. This is also by Havahart and can be picked up in your local Home Depot or Lowes.  A 32 oz bottle covers about 500 sq. feet so for most home gardens you will be okay.  It is OMRI certified organic (Note: When talking anything organic you need to look deeper than a label (natural, green, organic, etc.)  To be sure in pest control, weed control, etc., it must be OMRI-certified.  In vegetables and foods, USDA-Organic.)

The main ingredients are capsaicin (juice from hot peppers), garlic (vegetable), and putrescent egg solids.  In case your wondering what putrescent means, break it down putre (think putrid) and scent (smell).  You got it.  It smells terrible. Once it dries, however, humans can’t smell it but animals can.

So I have laid down a layer of this stuff over the young plants and according to the label it should be covered up to 3 months.  We will see.

The final thoughts are this.  Before you reach for your pellet gun (thought about it) or some highly poisonous extermination food or liquid, research ways to naturally deter your garden pests.  Once that poison gets in the soil it can stay for a really long time.  And as for using a pellet gun, it is too time consuming to sit and wait, and those rabbits won’t end up on my table so it is  senseless.  So have a heart and try to deter instead of exterminating.

Well back to the farm,

Farmer Tuley

About ideadonnafarm

I am the resident farmer for IDEA Public Schools in Donna, Texas. I, along with the students, tend an acre right on the school grounds. The things I grow go straight to the students plate, fresh and healthy. This blog is about the projects, ideas (pun), and all around happenings on the IDEA Donna farm. If you live in the area and want to help out, feel free to email me at
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