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View Full Version : Just NOT a Good Day Hunting Rabbit...


Shane Tuttle
June 17, 2009, 10:45 PM
I live outside of a small town in an association. No covenants. We have roughly an acre of unfenced yards between each other. Neighbors are far enough away that you can give a friendly wave in the morning but they can't look out their window into your kitchen window and see how much Tabasco you put on your eggs in the mornings.

Most everybody is sick and tired of the rabbit population around here. All of my neighbors have given me permission to enter their property any time to rid of them. I told them I sometimes use a Stevens 20ga. shotgun or a Springfield 87A .22lr to do the deed. Since they let me roam the area, I thought best to buy a GAMO air rifle when on their property especially in the darker hours. For the past year, I've dispatched quite a few with no problems...until Monday...

I just started to mow my lawn. I happened to turn the corner around my shop and saw one, BIG rabbit. He froze in his tracks as I did. Went inside to grab the rifle. Headed back and he was still there. At 50 feet, I took aim and dropped him right there. Perfect side shot in the head. No suffering. All is well. Humane kill. One less expensive neighbors' garden ruined. Continued my mowing duties. Then, I saw what I wished I never had seen....

I turned the other corner of my shop from the back side to the side opposite side where I downed that big boy. It wasn't a big boy. Fur was covering an area between my plants. You guessed it. I left a nest of EIGHT babies not more than a day or two old motherless. I'm all for hunting adult or adolescent varmints. But helpless babies is NOT my cup of tea. All the animal shelters were closed. I wasn't going to drop a hefty sum for an on-call fee for my vet. EVERYBODY hates rabbits in my neighborhood for said reasons. So, I'm stuck with dealing with the darkest side of volunteering for varmint control.

Call me a sissy. Call me a pansy. It won't bother me and I can understand being they are varmints after all. But I was and I am still sickened that I had to take care of the issue at hand. I think my GAMO is going to get a rest for a while until I gather myself. I think this is one difficult experience I've had to deal with in quite some time. I'm not sure what I'm wanting out of this post other than I had to get it "on paper" and off my chest. My wife wants to know why I'm clamming up and I won't tell her. She's an even bigger animal lover than I am and there's VERY few things I don't talk to her about. This just happens to be one of them.

Wildalaska
June 17, 2009, 10:54 PM
Aw dude Im sorry you feel bad:(

WildhaveadrinkandrelaxAlaska TM

Nnobby45
June 17, 2009, 10:56 PM
Call me a sissy. Call me a pansy.

You sissy.:p You pansy:D


Well, you can resume hunting in the late summer when they're semi-grown. Or quit shooting the coyotes.:)

Dingoboyx
June 17, 2009, 10:59 PM
called you a sissy or a pansy if....




You [hadn't] done either of the things you did....

You did EXACTLY the right thing..... you got rid of a great big bunny factory & you didn't leave the babies to starve slowly to death....

When you shot the big'n, you weren't to know she had brats.... you did the right thing offing her.... Those babies in a month or 2 would have been producing litters of their own, so you have really done well.....

So dont be a sissy or a pansy, keep your rifle handy and shoot ANY rabbit or other varmint you see, immediately.

Many rabbits you have shot in the past have prolly left litters somewhere.... get over it... if a fox or a 'yote had got her, the babies would have suffered the same fate.... thats life.....

Now put away your 'human' feelings, and keep shootin' rabbits, your neighbours and local environment needs blokes like you to cull the population of varmints ;)

Stop beating on yourself and keep up the good work :cool:

Scorch
June 17, 2009, 11:56 PM
Nits breed lice. Nip 'em in the bud.

JohnKSa
June 18, 2009, 12:37 AM
Yup, that's not fun. But sometimes it needs to be done.

hogdogs
June 18, 2009, 08:04 AM
Well If it helps, I would be tossin the youngsters in the snake cage til' Eva were full.
when in the task of varmint control, there are some things that occur that make me question my duties. whether it be the roaches, ants and rats from my "pro" pest control days or later, the pigs, dillars and possums... I know my job is to reduce the "numbers" so a mother with young back in a den or nest can be considered a great take. If the bunnies are furry and mobile they will survive most likely... if not... oh well...
Brent

Shane Tuttle
June 18, 2009, 08:11 PM
Well If it helps, I would be tossin the youngsters in the snake cage til' Eva were full.

You make use of the animal for a purpose. I do see your point, though. I guess they may have been innocent and helpless at the time but would be the future in destroying gardens. Kinda feel like I lost a little bit of my humanity in a way....or actually grew a few more hairs on my chest...

In my head it was the logical thing to do. In my heart it was sickening, cruel, and a bit daunting.

Foxrr
June 18, 2009, 08:29 PM
After expressing sympathy for a badly wounded goat, I once had another shooter say to me, 'If you can't hack it maybe you shouldn't be here.'
I told him, 'When you lose your humanity you've got serious problems.'
Any hunting is going to have such incidents as woundings and having to deal with helpless babes left motherless. If it's vermin, then you're doing the right thing by despatching the babies as quickly and humanely as possible. They're as much of a problem potentially as the big ones and have to go.
Any wounding or sucker-disposal makes me feel a bit crook. Occasionally I even query myself why I like to hunt, but I know it's part of my instinctive make-up. I simply can handle it, and like the challenge, and many can't. Sometimes they're the people who want the faceless few like me and fellas like the other guys on this forum to do their 'dirty work' for them. Often they don't even want to admit the dirty work needs to be done.
Tuttle, I guess if you're going to keep hunting and especially culling - that most necessary but distasteful form of hunting - you're going to have to come to terms with your humanity. Just be satisfied and content you haven't lost it.
I should add..There isn't an animal on the face of this earth that deserves to be killed cruelly, or a babe you've found that should be left for the predators to chew. They are all doing what nature intended. It's all too often human intervention that turns them into overpopulated pests.

Brian Pfleuger
June 18, 2009, 08:46 PM
Call me a sissy. Call me a pansy. It won't bother me and I can understand being they are varmints after all. But I was and I am still sickened that I had to take care of the issue at hand. I think my GAMO is going to get a rest for a while until I gather myself. I think this is one difficult experience I've had to deal with in quite some time.

What I'd call you is a real man. I had to do a similar thing with :barf::(a kitten:(:barf:. I was haunted by the sight for years, but... you do what you have to do.

JagFarlane
June 18, 2009, 08:55 PM
After expressing sympathy for a badly wounded goat, I once had another shooter say to me, 'If you can't hack it maybe you shouldn't be here.'
I told him, 'When you lose your humanity you've got serious problems.'

Reminds me of a hunting article I read years ago and always remember. The author was going on about buck fever and simply put it as this "The day that any hunter no longer experiences buck fever is the day they should stop hunting. The reason being, is its no longer hunting, but simply killing."

I can understand why you feel sickened, and no worries, I don't see you as a coward.

djohn
June 18, 2009, 09:34 PM
I can understand you feeling bad thats just means you have humanity its a good thing. You did what you needed to do to control the problem at hand and in the unlikely hood the survival of the young would just continue the cycle of garden destroyers.

Shane Tuttle
June 18, 2009, 11:25 PM
Your comments are appreciated, fellas.

It isn't the end of the world of course. This just bothered me quite a bit since I didn't talk to anyone about it...namely the one person that I've always confided in.

Wildalaska
June 18, 2009, 11:36 PM
This just bothered me quite a bit since I didn't talk to anyone about it...namely the one person that I've always confided in.

I forgive you and understand...you'll tell me the next time :)

WildimallearsAlaska TM

Buzzcook
June 19, 2009, 12:25 AM
It's the surprise that sets us on tilt.
If you had known before hand that you'd have to kill a covey of babies bunnies as well, you probably would have been ok with it. Having that responsibility plopped in your lap without any recourse makes it pretty icky.

riggins_83
June 19, 2009, 12:56 AM
If you were able to see that without emotion you'd be one sick person... at IMO. Sorry it went that way for you.

Pilot
June 19, 2009, 01:14 AM
Normal human response. Nothing to be ashamed of.

impalacustom
June 19, 2009, 03:15 AM
I understand you feel bad but this is exactly why there are seasons to hunt and not to hunt.

ActivShootr
June 19, 2009, 03:52 AM
Nine rabbits with one pellet? I'd call that efficent pest control.

hogdogs
June 19, 2009, 07:40 AM
'When you lose your humanity you've got serious problems.'
Here in is an issue. Humanity, In my mind, is how I approach fellow humans. Humanity is of no concern when dealing with animals. I consider all animals no more than just inventory.
Brent

Foxrr
June 19, 2009, 10:13 AM
Geez hogdogs, I had all sorts of things I was going to say in reply. But in the end I guess each of us seeks our own personal level of feeling toward other folks and other species. Perhaps it's a mix of nature and nurture way back as to how we react. I reckon some of it is in our genes too.
If we were all of us unable to kill, we'd still be sitting around munching leaves like a bunch of mountain gorillas. And maybe being harassed to death by some other superior species.
Just like they are!

Wildalaska
June 19, 2009, 11:59 AM
we'd still be sitting around munching leaves like a bunch of mountain gorillas.

Ever been to a luncheon put on by PETA?:D

WildgotsomehairyleafeatersthereAlaska ™

stargazer65
June 19, 2009, 12:24 PM
No Easter Eggs for you next year.

Shane Tuttle
June 19, 2009, 04:10 PM
Nine rabbits with one pellet? I'd call that efficent pest control.

One pellet. One mother. One hoe......

Didn't think it was really necessary to get graphic on the method of extermination.

globemaster3
June 19, 2009, 07:43 PM
We had a deer problem on a base I was stationed at. Always getting deer on the taxiways and runways, especially at night and doubly during hunting season where they went to the area of least pressure.

Fine and dandy until one of my crews hit one on a touch and go in a C-141. $90,000 in damage to parts that couldn't be replaced on an aircraft that was headed to the boneyard. Got a waiver for a 1-time flight and retired her early to Davis-Monthan.

The Ops Group CC discussed with me what we could do. I told him to let me shoot the deer. He complied. I went on call with a 12 ga, 00 buck, and a spotlight at night and an unlimited # of tags from the state. After about a month, no more deer.

It wasn't fun. It wasn't sport. It was killing for a purpose. That purpose was to prevent a crew from losing control while trying to miss a deer and killing themselves along with totalling their aircraft.

The connection to you?

It may not be fun. It may not be sport. But sometimes you just do what you got to do for the better good. In this case you prevented your neighbors from having to fix the damage that a pack of those pesky critters would have inflicted.

Oh yeah, and all the meat I shot was eaten by folks on the base, mostly enlisted families who were a little worse off.

Foxrr
June 19, 2009, 10:15 PM
Ever been to a luncheon put on by PETA?

Not on your nellie! I'm a carnivore thru and thru. Well, ok, an omnivore.
Seems those people have an overwhelming desire to go back to their ancestral roots (pardon the pun). Hell, they're there already!

banditt007
June 20, 2009, 11:51 AM
globemaster3, I'm glad to hear about how the meat was used. Many times when there are a 'pest' animal, it will be shot and let lay. not using it when it is a good eating animal is not right IMO. You did the right thing. as for the OP good work, your feelings are normal as far as i'm concerned. Don't sweat it you did the right thing. It is hard though, b/c bunnies are one of the cutest baby animals there is. that had to of made it extra hard. Keep doing what you are doing, nothing wrong with it.

FrontSight
June 21, 2009, 09:27 AM
Oh get a hold of yourself and realize you did a good thing; those eight would have turned into 100 in a few months. Be proud and smile.

SKULLANDCROSSBONES65
June 26, 2009, 06:16 PM
G'day. It is issues just like this that the anti gun people don't want to here about, as it shows that not everybody with a gun is a bloodthirsty killer.
I hope you have now had a chance to talk to the Minister for War and Finance about the issue.

Warhammer
June 26, 2009, 08:49 PM
I know how you feel. I've been fighting a rabbit problem for a while now. I was mowing my lawn about 2 weeks ago and went over a burrow that I hadn't noticed. One of the young critters tried to bolt right while the mower was over the burrow. I won't get too graphic, but the result was not pleasant nor was death instantaneous. I wouldn't have thought twice about popping this varmint with my .22, but this was completely unexpected, messy and fairly disturbing. I was in my "mowing zone" with my sound isolating earphones in and suddenly...

I also haven't told me wife about that. I share most everything with her, but no productive purpose would be served sharing this.

Shane Tuttle
June 26, 2009, 11:10 PM
I also haven't told me wife about that. I share most everything with her, but no productive purpose would be served sharing this.

She ran over a burrow last year. Took out 2 of them in a flash. She really took it hard.

johnwilliamson062
June 26, 2009, 11:35 PM
Wouldn't a cat or a dog like them?
IDK, never dealt with that problem with rabbits. I know from mucking stalls that when you find baby mice a cat quickly appears and takes care of the problem for you.

Csspecs
June 27, 2009, 12:19 AM
I don't like that part of rat control either, when you find a nest it really really sucks.

only time I have shot my gun dry with my eyes closed. I could not bear to watch what was happening and I wanted the job done throughly.

Daryl
June 27, 2009, 07:48 AM
I found a nest of little rabbits in my yard once, and we had (past tense) the same problem with rabbits.

I fed 'em to my dogs. Seriously, my neighbors aren't as cooperative as your's (some are, some aren't), so when I get the chance I thin the critters any way I can.

As for my wife, she encouraged me to do what I did. She was tired of getting half eaten vegetables from the garden too.

ETA-I just mentioned this thread, and she said that she felt a LITTLE guilty about it, and I probably did as well, but you do what you have to do to control such problems. She's a ranch gal, so she's well aware of things like that having to be done at times.

Daryl

stargazer65
June 27, 2009, 09:15 AM
One of the young critters tried to bolt right while the mower was over the burrow. I won't get too graphic, but the result was not pleasant nor was death instantaneous.She ran over a burrow last year. Took out 2 of them in a flash. She really took it hard.
I'd still rather run over a rabbit burrow then the yellow jacket nest I ran over two years ago...OUCH.:eek:

Uncle Buck
June 27, 2009, 09:39 AM
You know I raise my own meat (Cows/pigs/turkeys/chickens) and hunt as well. When I kill one of the animals, I do not enjoy it (The killing part) and I just want it over and done with as quickly as possible.
I think when it quits bothering you, then you have a problem. Just about every hunter I know wants the clean, quick kill. We may joke it is because we are too lazy to track an animal, but I believe it is the humanity in us that does not want to see the suffering.
I said I was going to quit hunting a few years back because I had shot a deer and could not find it. I have never shot anything that just wandered off and I searched for four hours for that deer and could not find it. I knew I hit it, I knew it bled out pretty fiercely, but I could not find it.
It was a doe in a herd of about 6 total deer. I shot and saw all the deer run to the west. As I was sitting there having my after shot cigarette, I saw 6 deer run back towards me to the east. I put out the cigarette and began tracking from where they were standing when I shot to the east, where I saw them run.
With the amount of blood, I could not figure it out and not finding her was really devastating. I began doubting my skills and shooting abilities. I finally gave up after about four hours and went back to the house and told my dad I was through hunting.
Later that evening he asked me to take him out to the old "oak" stand, because he wanted to hunt a little bit. As I was taking him out to the stand, there, laying right in the path to the stand was the doe I had shot earlier. She had run about 20 yards, through thick cover and died.
Dad and I talked about it and the best we could figure was I shot at one group of deer and when they took off west, they must have stumble on to another group of deer and they all headed back east. either way, it made me feel better knowing she was not suffering somewhere.
I still hunt and although dad has passed away, I have a new hunting partner, my nephew. He took his first deer this year, a nice six pointer (That he was supposed to be driving towards me!) and dropped it with one shot. The deer took one step and fell over.
You can call me a sissy and a pansy, but I also do not want any animal to suffer. Guess that is the humanity in most of us.