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‘Watch And Wait’ Is Rabbit Advice

Taranaki Regional Council media release
21 February 2008
For immediate release

‘Watch And Wait’ Is Rabbit Advice

Taranaki’s dry summer has brought increasing concern about rabbit numbers in some parts of the region.

But “watch and wait” is the advice of pest animal authorities.

“Late autumn and early winter is the best time for the most effective control of rabbit numbers,” says the Taranaki Regional Council’s Animal Pest Manager, George Gallop.

“Any control attempt now runs the risk of being counter-productive. If rabbit populations are put under stress in the summer, they usually respond with an increase in breeding – which we don’t want.”

Mr Gallop says it is understandable that land owners are concerned about rabbit numbers, particularly in Coastal Taranaki. But some of the problem may well be perception, as the dry conditions and reduced growth make the animals more visible.

Rabbits have a “containment” classification in the Taranaki Regional Council’s Animal Pest Management Strategy, meaning land owners must control them if numbers are high and they are spreading to other properties.

Mr Gallop says advice can be obtained from the Council’s Pest Management Officers by calling 0800 736 222.

Information is also available on the Council’s website, www.trc.govt.nz. Click on the “Environment” tab at the top of the home page then follow the links to “Pests” then “Pest Animals”.


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