Wash for keeping rabbits, sheep, and mice away from trees.
Some writers recommend fresh lime, slaked with soft water (old soap-suds are best); make the wash the thickness of fence or house wash. When 1 peck of lime is used, add, when hot, 1/2 gallon crude carbolic acid, 1/2 gallon gas-tar, and 4 pounds of sulfur. Stir well. For summer wash leave gas-tar out, and add in place of it 1 gallon of soft soap. To keep rabbits and sheep from girdling, wash late in fall, or about the time of frost, as high as one can reach.
Blood for rabbits.
Blood smeared upon trees, as high up as rabbits can reach, will generally keep them away.
To drive rabbits from orchards.
Dip rags in melted sulfur, and then secure them to sticks which are stuck promiscuously through the orchard.
Another wash to protect trees from rabbits.
Fresh cow dung, 1 peck; quick-lime, 1/2 peck; flowers of sulfur, 1/2 pound; lampblack, 1/4 pound. Mix the whole into a thick paint with urine and soapsuds.
Commercial aloes, 1 pound to 4 gallons of water, both sprinkled on leaves and painted on the bark, gives a bitter taste, which repels rabbits.
California rabbit poisons.
1. Pieces of watermelon, canteloupe, or other vegetables of which they are fond, may be poisoned with strychnine and then scattered around the orchard.
2. To 100 pounds of wheat take 9 gallons of water and 1 pound of phosphorus, 1 pound of sugar, and 1 ounce oil of rhodium. Heat the water to boiling-point, and let it stand all night. Next morning stir in flour sufficient to make a sort of paste. Scatter it about the place.
3. Another preparation is 1/2 teaspoonful of powdered strychnine, 2 teaspoonfuls of fine salt, and 4 of granulated sugar. Put all in a tin box and shake well. Pour in small heaps on a board. It hardens into a solid mass. Rabbits lick it for the salt, and the sugar disguises the poison.
Sulfur for rabbits.
Equal proportions of sulfur, soot, and lime, made into a thick paint with cow-manure. Smear upon the trees.
Cow-manure for rabbits.
A mixture of lime, water, and cow-manure, made strong, is said to be an excellent anti-rabbit composition.
Asafoetida for rabbits.
A teaspoonful of tincture of asafoetida in 1/2 pailful of liquid clay, mud, or muck of any kind. Apply with a brush to the stem and branches of young trees. Two or three applications during winter.
Kansan methods of protecting trees from rabbits (Kansas Station).
1. Trapping. — Traps of various sorts may be constructed. A simple and successful method is to sink a barrel in the ground level, with its surface. Fit the head slightly smaller than the top, and allow it to swing freely on a rod or old broomstick. Pieces of apple or grains of corn may be placed on the outer edge of the cover, and when the rabbit attempts to get these, the lid tips up, and he slides into the barrel, while the lid, which is slightly heavier on one side than the other, assumes its original position. The heavier side should strike against a heavy nail or bolt so that only the lighter side of the lid will drop. It should be covered over with brush or light, flat stones.
Fig. 5 — Wellhouse rabbit-trap.
An ingenious trap for catching rabbits has been designed by Walter Wellhouse, and used with remarkable success by him in his orchards (Fig. 5). The trap consists of a box made of fence boards (old ones preferred), six inches wide and one inch thick. The boards are cut twenty-two inches long, and the top and bottom boards are nailed on to the side boards, thus making the opening four inches wide and six inches high. The door, D, is made of wire, shaped as shown in fig. d, and hung with two staples, cc, to the under side of the top board. To prevent the rabbit from pushing the door open, a strip three-fourths of an inch square is inserted in the opening and nailed to the bottom board, as shown in fig. a, and in part in fig. d. The door must be made long enough to reach well below this catch, as shown in fig. d. The trigger is made of wire, bent as shown in figs. b and c, and hung loosely with two staples to the center of the top board. These staples must be carefully placed, to allow the trigger to be pulled forward far enough so that the door will rest upon it when the trap is set, and also to allow the loop in the trigger, A, fig. c, to be pushed against the back of the trap by the rabbit when it is sprung, thus preventing its being bent. To operate the trap, push the door, D, inward, and with the forefinger catch the hooked end of the trigger, B, fig. c, and pull it forward until the door rests upon the wire above the hook. The rabbit enters the trap, prompted by curiosity or otherwise, just as he enters a hollow log, and thinks no more of the wire trigger than he would of a small piece of brush which he must push out of his way. As soon as he touches the trigger, the door drops and the rabbit is caught. No bait is used, and the trap cannot easily be sprung by birds or wind. Care must be taken to see that all staples are loosely set, so that the trigger slides easily and the door will drop of its own weight. If new boards are used, it would be well to stain with some dark coloring material which is not offensive to the rabbit's delicate sense of smell.