Rabbits and Bermuda


#21

Nm, I guess I just confused it with Amazon Alexa, looks like the only recipes available monitor gmail for emails from Alarm.com and use that to trigger something else.


#22

My deterrent worked great. It’s a pain when taking the trash cans out though. Haven’t had bunny issues in months thinking of removing.


#23

I am using Repels All, got it at either Lowes or Home Depot. It was cheaper than Critter Ridder. I buy it in the concentrate form.


#24

I thought I’d provide an update on my rabbit issue in case it’s of use to anyone. I took a 2 step approach.

STEP 1: Get the rabbits to stop coming to my lawn to munch on it.

Prior to @Linn posting his Repels All suggestion, I had already ordered two products:

Coyote Urine

Ortho Deer B Gon

Both had mixed reviews on Amazon, but they were better for these products than most, or at least just as good. Of the two, the ‘Ortho Deer B Gon’ certainly seems to be the most effective for me. The first night I sprayed it and didn’t see rabbits for a few days. The product claims that you can water after 20 minutes, and claims that it lasts 30 days. It also states that it covers 10,000 sq. ft. I didn’t find any of those claims to be the case for now. The rate that the product came out will probably only end up covering about 1/3rd of that 10,000 sq.ft, but I plan to play around with the application rate to see if I can throttle it back. After a couple of irrigation cycles I had to reapply, which meant about 6 days in our hot weather. This week seems to be better, so maybe the rabbits have just decided to move on ? I sprayed the Ortho right on the lawn. It has almost a cinnamon smell to it.

I used the Coyote Urine on the periphery at various times throughout the last couple of weeks, in some cases when I knew that the Ortho had washed away. The concept is that the rabbits will smell the scent and detect a coyote has been there and it won’t want to take any chances. I didn’t spray right on the lawn as I didn’t want to negatively affect the pH of the soil. Needless to say it smells absolutely awful when spraying, but I didn’t notice much odor the next day. The bottle will last me longer than the Ortho, but I’m not sure that it has had any significant impact. When the bottle runs out I’ll stick with the Ortho if I need to continue. Again, my hope is that they rabbits just find somewhere else to eat for a while.

STEP 2: Test my soil’s pH.

Since animal urine can affect the soil pH I decided to have it tested. I bought this soil test kit and sent it in for testing.

The kit costs $14.99, and the shipping for me was ~$10. They email you the results within 2 days after they receive them, so I had results within a week of ordering it from Amazon Prime. If you tell them what you are growing in the soil, they give you the ideal pH and a specific treatment plan.

The ideal pH for Bermuda is 6.5. You can see that at 8.0 my pH was high, so they recommended that I add elemental sulfur and gave a specific amount. They also recommended the amount of nitrogen and potash to add. I bought the elemental sulfur at Lowe’s in the garden section, added it the fertilizer and applied it with a drop spreader last night, watering immediately afterward. Hopefully the lawn won’t burn anywhere. We’ve had some monsoon activity which has dropped temps and provided cloud cover, so I’m hopeful.

So I wondered how my high pH might correlate to rabbit urine. A quick web search turned up an article that shows rabbit urine is alkaline. Go figure that so was my lawn soil. My lawn soil pH pretty much matched the rabbit urine pH.

Six months ago I bought an irrigation controller. Now I find myself buying coyote urine and researching rabbit urine pH. Sad but true.


I live in Arizona. Everything is dying on the Flexible Schedule
#25

Ha, ha, ha, ha, thanks for the laugh @azdavidr! We promise we won’t tell anyone. :wink:


#26

I meant to also mention that some of these motion detecting devices @George mentioned have better reviews than the liquid or granular repellents. I’m not going that route as right now as I’d probably soak people walking past my front lawn, and/or the unit would get stolen, but if I had a back yard problem I’d be going for it. They seem to be hose based but I imagine they could be connected to an underground system with the appropriate adapters. Most are battery operated. The Elenker is solar powered and has a 5-star rating.


Motion detection and zone specific zone and time control
#27

Yeah I vote on it being stolen. Doesn’t matter what kind of good neighborhood you live in, nothing is safe out front.


#28

I’ve lived here a looong time and I can’t ever recall seeing such a large rabbit population! Every day I see one or two new little munchers in the front yard, eating mesquite beans. I’ve had to fish 3 or 4 out of the pool in the last few months. By now, I would have expected to see an increase in the coyote population too, but that hasn’t been the case.

The have almost killed my desert marigolds and hesperaloe and they love the flowers of the lantana. They are eating plants that are supposed to be “rabbit resistant”!

The lawn seems to be doing fine in spite of the rabbits coming to dine every afternoon, but I’ll soon be planting vegetables and then it will be “no holds barred”!


#29

Are they alive? I would hate to have to fish out dead rabbits from the pool. At most I have to get dead mice and usually I don’t see them until I open up the skimmer


#30

Only one was still alive and the Hubs found that one in the skimmer basket. We were surprised, when after putting its limp body on the cool deck, it kicked, sneezed, then jumped up and wobbled away. We just stared.

I removed two from the deep end and just the other day, one floating on the surface. They have all been about only two weeks old.

Yeah, I hate it, too, but knowing how bodies decompose in water is what grosses me out. :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes: Each time we find one, we shock the pool.


#31

Oh yeah, I’m not a very manly man when it comes to dead bodies in my pool. It once took me like an hour to get a dead rat out of my skimmer because I wasn’t sticking my hand down there with a cup to pick it up… I attached a cup to a pole and stuck that in and the body almost ripped in half because ti was in there awhile.


#32

A couple of months ago I found a dead cat on my front lawn. I’m guessing it met a coyote the night before. The carcass was on it’s back, completely gutted, right down to the rib cage. It was a scene right out of National Geographic, except on my tiny front lawn.


#33

@azdavidr Maybe rabbits aren’t your problem and it’s the spirit of the dead cat that haunts your front lawn


#34

Cockroaches in the skimmer gross me out! I hate putting my hand down there to lift out the basket, no matter what is in there.

I’ve been lucky to be able to use the leaf skimmer which is on a long pole.

Hope you don’t find too many “dead bodies” floating in your pool! :wink:


#35

Seconded. You start with something totally innocent, buying a new controller so you can do less work to care for your lawn and then before you know it you’ve covered your lawn with little plastic measuring cups, dug up and replaced your sprinkler heads so they match, and started testing your soil chemistry like a crazy person.

I swear they should start a supply store or become an Amazon affiliate with recommended products. They are like drug dealers getting me hooked after that first hit. :slight_smile:


#36

Good suggestion @TastyWombat. Hee, hee, hee–affiliate marketing.

The Rachio team should include disclaimers and warnings with the controller. In addition to those you mention, the following might be added. :wink:

Use of this controller may cause unusual behavior such as social comparison, unusual interest in rabbit poop, or obsession with weather statistics.

The Rachio team is not responsible for additional purchases or pursuit of any new hobbies including, but not limited to, watching the grass grow, posting to an online community, and frequent discussions of smart controllers with coworkers or people in line at Home Depot.


#37

Or it may cause you to constantly hit refresh on your local PWS website to watch the precip count go up as you watch a 2am storm roll thru… don’t know who would do that…


#38

Yeah, not that I am guilty of anything in my post, either . . .
Well, can’t say I’ve actually watched the grass grow.


#39

I thought I’d provide an update after a month of using the rabbit repellent and after applying the elemental sulfer to bring the pH back down. I also mixed in some fertilizer per the soil tester’s recommendation. The yellow around the edges is due to overly aggressive edging, but overall the treatment seemed to do the job. I’m still spraying Ortho twice a week after irrigation. Otherwise the rabbits come right back.

RIGHT (8/6/16)

RIGHT (9/3/16)

After all of this, just when I get it looking the way I wanted it to, it’s time to think about the Bermuda going into dormancy and overseeding with Rye.


#40

Looks great!!!