Some people are dumping bunnies beside the highway in Barrington, N.S., and a local rescue group wants them to stop.
To make matters worse, thieves are also stealing the expensive live traps donated to help the volunteers catch the young rabbits.
“We’re having a really hard time,” said volunteer Shelley Boutilier.
She and her husband were in their car at exit 30 on Highway 103 recently when they spotted a white bunny in the middle of the road.
“This beautiful, tame, white bunny was standing on the white line, up on her back legs, and I thought, ‘Oh, oh, she’s not supposed to be here,'” Boutilier said.
And more young rabbits were discovered in the area — eight in total.
“The ones that were put out were baby bunnies. Two blacks, two whites, two browns and two greys,” Boutilier said.
More bunnies dumped
She organized a group of about nine people who began coaxing the animals away from the highway, going back to check on them, to feed them and to try to catch them.
Boutilier herself goes out three times a day — at breakfast, lunch and dinner — to check on the bunnies.
The volunteers have rescued seven bunnies so far and have found “excellent homes” for the little rabbits, she said.
Caught in the act
But as the number of rescued rabbits increased, so did the number of abandoned animals. And they weren’t all young or recognizable as the earlier rabbits discovered on the side of the road.
Someone was dumping more bunnies.
Boutilier said a man has been caught in the act.
“His explanation was there were too many bunnies and they were eating his flowers and he thought, what the heck, he’ll leave them here.”
To make matters worse, others have been stealing live traps donated to the bunny rescue cause. The traps cost $115 each.
“I placed them out. Within an hour and a half, they were stolen,” Boutilier said.
She bought another trap and it, too, was stolen “right away, within a half-hour.” No one has yet been nabbed for the thefts.
The group is still trying to corral the remaining rabbits, but there’s a good chance they won’t be in the area much longer.
“Now, the bunnies are going deeper into the woods. Potentially, there are eight left out there. Once they get into the woods, they’ll start breeding,” Boutilier said.
She’s asking the people dumping animals to…