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Old January 12, 2012, 10:02 PM   #12
phil mcwilliam
Senior Member
Join Date: July 18, 2007
Posts: 573
I've shot hundreds, if not thousands of wild rabbit here in Australia. The wild rabbit in Australia is classed as a pest & must be legally controlled on privately owned farms & ranches. The Australian wild rabbit descended from the European wild rabbit, which was released in Australia for early settlers to hunt as a food source.
The Australian government has released 2 diseases specifically to try & control rabbit numbers. Myxomatosis is spread by mosquitos & was released in the 1950's. Calicivirus is spread by fleas/ flies & was released in the 1990's. Both viruses proved initially to be effective, but the rabbits soon built up some immunity.
Whilst rabbits with Myxomatosis or Calicivirus should not be eaten, rabbits unaffected by the disease are fine to eat. Some people find the rabbits a bit strong in flavor so they soak overnight in either milk, or a dilute vinegar/water mix, but others will cook & eat the rabbits as is.
My best tally for a weekends rabbit shooting was 98, & they were all shot with a .22 lr while out walking, not using a spotlight.
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