Saturday, June 4, 2011

Those Waskley Wabbitts!

The drought here has had a definite impact on the cottontails and jackrabbits around our place.  They have nothing to eat out in the pasture.  It still looks like the dead of winter and contains no moisture.  In fact, I have it so short that most of them have moved on to the neighbor's places because there is no cover for them on my small acreage of grass.

To the south of me though, is what was once CRP that has been taken out of the program and has been the home to 8 horses and a jack for the past couple of years.  It still has some grass -- in clumps -- where the jackrabbits and cottontails can hide.  They can't quite reach the water in the tank from which the horses drink though, so, they come to the one place where they can get moisture -- my lawn.

I have the green oasis in the midst of the unbroken sea of amber that surrounds me.  It is green because my sprinkler system (I am so thankful for an automatic underground system) keeps it that way.  But, each morning, it also forms a dew thanks to our cool nights.  So, the rabbits come on over for breakfast and a sip of water.

My lawn shows the damage.  Of course, I don't have to mow as frequently because of their foraging, but, they don't eat it evenly.  It seems they like certain areas better than others.

Those of you who know me know that I grew up where rabbits weren't necessarily looked upon as cute little bunnies but, as full-blown pests.  That attitude has stayed with me through the years.  I guess the words of my grandfather sum it all up when he once told me, "Five jackrabbits will eat as much grass as a cow.  I can't make any money feedin' jackrabbits."

So, I keep my sons' pellet gun by the back door.  I can't even seem to thin 'em out!  I guess what they say about the reproductive capabilities of rabbits must be true......

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