Home > Animals and wildlife, Gardening > Hare today, gone tomorrow

Hare today, gone tomorrow

I think I once saw a rabbit in Italy, but certainly not round here where we live. They aren’t common at all, unlike in Britain. However, I’ve seen a lot of hares.

I rather wish I hadn’t. Lovely creatures though they undoubtedly are (and they were once my favourite animal), they gnaw at the boles of the fruit trees unless you stop them.

They nibbled the bark off the trunk of a pear tree in the orchard, which I took as the signal to put a jacket, made out of a short length of pipe split down one side (to fit it) and with holes punched in it (for ventilation), on the trunk of every tree in the orchard.

There are some semi-wild plum trees growing along the drive which didn’t receive the same protection. The hares nibbled one slender tree through completely so that the top part of the trunk just fell off.

I had difficulty with them over my vegetable patch, too. They liked nibbling off courgette shoots and beetroot tops so that I had to build great defence works out of old wooden pallets.

Joules had a leveret cornered once, and having next to no hunting instinct, he didn’t quite know what to do with it. Soft idiot that I am, I gave it a head start and it got clean away.

These droppings, and the plenty more like it, are evidence that the hare population is very much alive and well. I wish they would go, though, before they damage something else.

Hare droppings

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