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Letter of the Day

Beware the coming plague

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Re: Warm winter prompts jump in bunnies (July 27). The academic argument by University of Manitoba biologist James Hare, that "nature will eventually regulate itself" and that "predation and disease will start to kick in" to control the burgeoning population of rabbits in Winnipeg is an absolute fallacy.

Recently arriving from living in New Zealand and Australia, I can attest to what really happens when rabbit populations are allowed to get out of control. In short, when there is no effective predation of rabbits (and how can there be within the urban Winnipeg environment?), populations can rapidly increase to plague proportions.

Rural areas of New Zealand and Australia that get taken over by rabbits become like moonscapes, with absolutely no vegetation, holes every few feet and seething masses of hopping vermin.

With professor Hare's cosy Beatrix Potter prognosis -- probably mooted without a shred of evidence from other urban problem areas -- Winnipeg could be facing a very serious crisis, very soon.

The city needs to set up some sort of mini-task force, without further delay, to assess the real problem.

It must also find practical solutions in order to curb numbers, before an uncontrolled rabbit population will almost certainly curb our way of life in a very unpleasant way.

PHILIP A. BLAIN

Winnipeg

 

Your story recommends several ways to keep rabbits out of the garden.

Unfortunately, you neglect the most effective and useful method, which is eating them. This could also be the best way of dealing with nuisance geese.

BILL ROLLS

Emerson

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 31, 2012 A11

History

Updated on Tuesday, August 7, 2012 at 4:35 PM CDT: adds link

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