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Rabbits are nesting in the neighbor's yard behind us, and they feed them which encourages their occupation or infestation. There are dozens of them. They use my yard as their bathroom and their faeces are everywhere. I believe they are competing with my dogs for the territory. Dogs eat the pellets and get ill.

I also have no vegetation in my yard because they destroy it. I have used granules, sprays, decoys etc. but nothing is getting rid of them. I have even used live bait traps. The next step is to use snares but due to the kids in the neighborhood using the yards as their own park, I am fearful of injuring them.

What can I do to prevent them from destroying my garden?

  • Yes city said nothing that they can do. I called the Humane Society and they went in a round-about way of killing them... Not what I expected. – user10942 Mar 19 '15 at 23:21
  • Of course the neighbors behind us are the HOA President. Doesn't help either... – user10942 Mar 19 '15 at 23:22
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    If your yard is small enough, you could put up a physical barrier. – J. Musser Mar 20 '15 at 1:45
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    The Humane Society is simply taking a realistic view of the problem, in this case - though some of them are unfortunately more about "humane killing" than really trying to find any stray animals homes, what you have here is an excess population of vermin, not lost pets. Snares will not be a nicer way for the rabbits to go, so you might let them have at it rather than snaring. – Ecnerwal Mar 20 '15 at 2:35
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    @user10942 sounds like you have a political problem to deal with, not a nice situation to be in. – Escoce Mar 20 '15 at 13:38
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Have you called the city? They may be in violation of city code. If there isn't a code directly being offended, then push for nuisance abatement.

Edit: you could also try creating a marigold border, rodentae don't like marigolds, however with the density of the population you are dealing with, you'd need an expensive dense and fat border and it may still not work so well. I'd still call city hall.

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EDIT: I just had another idea. I saw what I believe was a long-tailed weasel, today, and its droppings. Ahem. After researching to find out what I had seen, I discovered that they eat rabbits. Then, I learned that ferrets eat rabbits, too. Ferrets are often pets. They have a strong smell. The smell of ferrets is said to stress rabbits out.

My idea is to get some urine of a rabbit predator (fox urine should do the trick), and put it around your yard.

We had a surplus of large, white rabbits in our neighborhood once. This was a rather unexpected experience, to see three large white rabbits investigating our front yard out of the blue (multiple times). We came to find out that someone up the street was raising free range rabbits. I think they started as a 4-H project, but there were almost 45 at one point. I only ever saw three or less at a time in our yard. They were around during the fall (a couple years ago or so), the entire winter and part of the spring. Then they vanished mysteriously.

We had children in the neighborhood who were always trying you catch the rabbits. Apparently, they seemed to be fairly successful, but there were still rabbits notwithstanding.

My other neighbor trapped a few, and put them in his freezer.

By and large, though, I think the hawks and coyotes got them. After the snow melted (and they were no longer camouflaged), they disappeared pretty fast. I don't know how they survived so well before the snow came, though. They were a lot faster and more suspicious after they'd been free range a while.

So, if you can attract hawks, that might be a good idea. Maybe that's easier said than done, but some people do put up perches for them and stuff. I don't know if you want coyotes; I hear they eat some garden fruits. Maybe train your dogs to chase rabbits.

Lately, there have been chickens in our neighborhood instead. Perhaps this is a trend.

Anyway, rabbits don't tend to climb high, normally. So, you might consider gardening higher up, if this turns out to be a chronic problem.

You can have plants that climb trees (like Kiwano, Shark Fin Melon and stuff), and then you only need to protect the stem.

I haven't tried it, but you might consider something like hog wire as a border; perhaps it would work if you get a kind where the gaps aren't too big. Chicken wire has smaller gaps. I've heard it can work. You can line a sturdier fence with it.

Here's some discussion on the problem. It may be helpful.

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