Rabbits And Harlequin Ladybirds

Rabbits

Rabbits are found across almost all of Western Europe. They live in colonies, underground in warrens (also known as setts or burrows)

Signs of a Rabbit problem:

Signs of tunnels and rabbit holes
Rabbit pellets
Damage to crops, plants and small trees.

Rabbits can be distinguished from a Hare by size. The Hare is bigger and has characteristic black tips on it’s ears. Rabbits have a small white tail when running, smaller hind legs.

REPRODUCTION

Rabbits breed all year round.
They reach sexual maturity in 2-3 months and have a gestation period of just 28 days.
They can produce up to 5 litters a year, average size is about 5.

IMPLICATIONS OF HAVING RABBITS

Rabbits eat most things which are green, young shoots are a favourite, thus causing extreme damage to crops, gardens, lawns and flower beds. They can eat approximately a third of their body weight daily. This is estimated to cost British agriculture millions of pounds.

HOW DO WE GET RID OF RABBITS?

The treatment of rabbits should be done in two ways, removing them and preventing them. There are various methods treatment that can be used, gassing, traps and snares; we will discuss the options with you after our initial assessment.

Prevention is in the form of netting, fencing and electric fencing, under and over ground as necessary.

Harlequin Ladybirds

Harlequin ladybirds are originally from native to eastern Asia. They were introduced to North America and Europe to control aphids and scale insects. They are becoming extremely common and well known in the UK. They feed off greenfly, black fly and aphids. They also like soft fruit, in particular pears.

Signs of a Harlequin Ladybird problem:

Evidence of ladybirds in the window frames and large numbers can be seen in the autumn.

Harlequin Ladybirds are domed and beetle in shape and structure. They are about 7-8mm, round pale yellow-orange, orange-red, and red-black.

REPRODUCTION

The females live in protected sites during the winter, mating later in the spring.
Eggs hatch approximately in 3-5 days.
The development from egg to adult can take 36 days or longer depending on the temperature. It may take longer in colder weather.
Adults can live 2-3 years.

IMPLICATIONS OF HAVING HARLEQUIN LADYBIRDS

They can form swarms and linger in areas for a long time.
Harlequin ladybirds can eat the food of our native ladybirds and can also eat the larvae, therefore they are an obvious threat to our native ladybirds
Sometimes they can bite and cause an allergic reaction.
They have been known to be a minor agricultural pest.

HOW DO WE GET RID OF LADYBIRDS?

The treatment is the use of an insecticide spray to the affected areas and traps. We will also treat any cracks or crevices where they may rest during the day.