View Full Version : escaped rabbit in Dunipace/Stirling area - would appreciate opinions

11-09-2013, 10:19 PM
A friend of mine texted me today asking for help in catching a domestic bunny they've spotted between Plean and Dunipace near Stirling in central Scotland. Currently we have 4 volunteers to go back tomorrow to try and catch him/her but we were wondering if anyone else local was able to lend a hand?

12-09-2013, 12:55 PM

Captain Helen
12-09-2013, 06:27 PM
Hope someone local can help and you can catch the bun xx

12-09-2013, 06:38 PM
Not managed to get any more volunteers so it's just me, Stewart and my two friends that spotted the bunny originally.

12-09-2013, 09:55 PM
The bunny is hiding in a gorse thicket on a country road between Dunipace and Plean. When we drove up it was sitting on the grass verge but it hopped off into the gorse as soon as we got out the car. It's a black and white up-eared rabbit and seems in fairly good shape.

The SSPCA don't want to know and claim that if we're unable to catch him/her then their inspector won't be able to either.

Any suggestions? We're thinking about buying a live trap but we aren't sure where to get one.

12-09-2013, 10:24 PM
I might be able to get hold of a live trap for you
does it seem tame?

12-09-2013, 10:26 PM
I've been speaking to Bunny at Fairly Beloved, she's going to help look for the bunny over the weekend and I'm going to buy a live trap tomorrow for them as there's a country store sort of place near where I live. Fairly Beloved have offered rescue space for the bunny if we manage to catch it. :D

12-09-2013, 10:39 PM
cool :)
well im free tomorrow and saturday early on if you want any help with it

12-09-2013, 11:12 PM
I'm local, could you be any more specific with whereabouts on the road the bunny is? I might have a spare half hour or so tomorrow afternoon to have a look. I know its not much, usually I have loads of spare time but I'm away this weekend :/

I rescued a little myxo wildie from that road a few years ago :(

13-09-2013, 12:26 PM
iiisecondcreep I'll PM you!

The latest update is that we're having a live trap dropped off by someone from the forum today (unsure if it's veejay) and we have a few people willing to have a hunt at the weekend. Having spoken to Bunny from Fairly Beloved last night the rabbit has been out there since at least Tuesday and we think it has a burrow as it completely vanished yesterday.

I'm off on holiday later on today but can still recieve updates via text and the forum as I'll have internet access while I'm away. I'll also be popping up at around 2pm for a look though cannot spend too much time.

13-09-2013, 04:39 PM
We went back today at 14:30 but weren't really in a position to hang about. If anyone is going up this weekend I imagine he could be captured by a few people working together. I worry as he's right beside a national speed road. :(

This is a photo we took from the car

13-09-2013, 05:40 PM
Poor bunny :( Hope someone can catch him. I can't believe the SSPCA don't want to know, that is really :censored:

13-09-2013, 05:44 PM
Unfortunately I did not have time to go along :( good luck in catching him/her.

16-09-2013, 04:47 PM
A few of us are going out tonight again, bunny was spotted again yesterday but couldn't be captured. :(

Have also e-mailed this to the SSPCA...

A friend of mine phoned you last week regarding a domestic rabbit that's on the loose near Dunipace but was told that the charity was unable to help. I know that the SSPCA has live traps that could easily be used to capture the rabbit and the inspectors are far more experienced than we are. I was hoping to receive clarification as to why the charity refused to help in this case and indeed why my friend was told that they did not have live traps (which I know to be untrue). I'm finding it very hard to justify not cancelling the direct debit I have giving money to the SSPCA every month. I feel the money might be better off being sent local rabbit rescues who have had a number of volunteers desperately try to capture the rabbit.
and have posted something similar on their facebook page.

16-09-2013, 10:29 PM
We headed up tonight along with my friends Ruth and Fraser who spotted the bunny originally and Natalie from Buddies Bunny rescue.

As myself and Stewart were waiting on the others arriving we drove up and down the stretch of road that bunny had been spotted previously. My friend Ruth had indicated that she had been up earlier but had failed to spot the rabbit. As we'd seen her every time we'd been up this was obviously a bit concerning. On our way past the usual spot my partner spotted a rabbit and, although he won't swear he's 100% correct, he's sure that this one was smaller and differently marked to the one we'd seen before. :(

We drove to a layby and spotted the usual bunny and pulled up alongside her to wait for the others. When they arrived we set a trap but bunny was too canny to be lured in and she vanished into the undergrowth once again after we'd come close to catching her a few times.

What we're now worried about is if the rabbit has a dependant litter. I didn't see the rabbit that Stewart seen but he's sure that the "baby" rabbit he seen was around half the size of the adult (who is a medium/small sized rabbit), had a different pattern and was a different colour. With that in mind we can't decide between the following scenarios...

- Our rabbit was dumped or escaped while pregnant
- Our rabbit is a male and has mated with a wild female (though we saw no evidence of wildies nearby)
- Our rabbit is female and has been caught by a wild male
- More than one rabbit has been dumped

Stewart isn't experienced enough to know a large baby rabbit from a small adult and so is a fairly unreliable witness in this respect.

As a result of this we're unsure if we should continue to try to capture the mother. Natalie is sure that as he/she has been out at the same place for so long and because there is so much cover nearby it's possible she'll be OK until we manage to catch her. We've been left with a number of puppy panels that we can continue to use and I'm collecting a live trap tomorrow.

However as we say we're not sure if trapping the usual rabbit and removing her is going to result in the baby or babies being dealt a death sentence.

17-09-2013, 09:48 AM
Has the bunny been rescued yet?? :)

17-09-2013, 11:00 AM
Has the bunny been rescued yet?? :)

See the latest update I posted last night, we're awaiting advice on whether it might be best not to try catching the rabbit just yet.

17-09-2013, 08:58 PM
Been out again tonight, spotted "baby" and seen that it is another adult but is extremely wary of us. Have set the live trap borrowed from Buddies Bunny rescue and we're heading back in a couple of hours.

17-09-2013, 09:29 PM
Gosh how stressful. Good luck catching these little guys. I guess we will never know their back-story :(

17-09-2013, 09:30 PM
Good luck guys hope bunnies can be caught. I bet its people releasing them as they can't cope with them

18-09-2013, 05:53 PM
My friend spoke to the security guard at a nearby building site, he says the rabbit has been there close to a year and has had litters in the past.

I'm now questioning how fair it would be to trap her and expect her to live as a domestic rabbit. Although she sits near a road it's not a very busy one and there is plenty of cover up there. We've been trying to capture her for over a week now and failed miserably.

19-09-2013, 04:38 PM
Don't all rush to advise us at once... :?

We've spoken to folk at Fairly Beloved Rabbit Rescue and their opinion is that if she's been living wild for close to a year it'd be cruel to trap her and expect her to live as a pet. There is at least one other domestic coloured adult up there and last night a baby was spotted as well (matching the markings and colour that Stewart seen a few nights ago). There is clearly a group of them up there and they've all managed to avoid the live trap that was set for 24 hours and checked every 3.

We'll keep an eye on them and maybe drive up there with some hay and stuff when the weather turns bad this winter.

19-09-2013, 04:45 PM
Aww, if she has been out for that long and has survived then she has probably found somewhere safe (not saying it was a good idea to release her, just that I can see how it would be unfair to trap her now after a year of wildie-life). You did your best and if she got through last winter that didn't seem to end until april, there is a good chance she will be ok again. Just a shame her fur makes her and any babies stand out :(

19-09-2013, 11:21 PM
Sorry not on here as often as I used to, I agree with bunny and everyone else at FBRC.
She's done well if she's had a few litters as well, maybe she's been accepted by a coloney or something?
Still couldn't hurt to lay down some forage or hay if the winter get's harsh.

19-09-2013, 11:57 PM
It's a tough one, but if you can't catch her then you don't have many options anyway. If you've seen more than one it's possible it's a 'wild' group with some pet genes in it and even she might be offspring of a wild/domestic or was born wild rather than released herself. A year is a long time for a pure domestic to survive.