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View Full Version : What's with all the rabbits in Denver?


Moriarty
09-20-2017, 10:38 AM
I moved to Denver about 2 years ago.

First, I rented an apartment in Glendale, a suburb right outside Denver. I lived right across from the Cherry Creek trail, which runs into the city. On many walks with my dog, I'd see rabbits scurrying out from the bushes.

Then, I moved to a rented house in Hilltop, one of the neighborhoods inside city limits. I'd frequently see bunnies in the yard, munching leaves. I started to jokingly think it was good luck if I saw one out the window when I'd brush my teeth in the morning.

Now, I've rented a house in Centennial, a city just south of Denver. Rabbits still abound. Just the other day I watched one munch on grass in my backyard while I ate breakfast.

I like the rabbits. They make me happy.

But why are they everywhere in the Denver area? Google has failed me.

Duckster
09-20-2017, 10:43 AM
Blame Fibonacci. Seriously.

https://colorado.ourcommunitynow.com/2017/08/10/rabbits-everywhere-denver-epidemic/

kayaker
09-20-2017, 10:46 AM
We have cyclic increases in our rabbit population. For a few years there will be rabbits everywhere. Then predators increase and we see lots of hawks, especially. Then for a while we see far fewer rabbits. Rinse, repeat.

astorian
09-20-2017, 10:58 AM
I've given this spiel about deer, but it applies to rabbits, too.

There were always wild rabbits in central Texas, where I live, just as they've always lived in Colorado. But humans have created ideal conditions for deer and rabbits. We have driven out most of the predators that used to eat rabbits and deer. And now we plant yummy grass and flowers for them, and keep those plants watered all year long. We've done everything for those critters but roll out the red carpet and ring the dinner bell.

dolphinboy
09-20-2017, 11:08 AM
Well for one thing they breed like... well... rabbits. I know that once they get established it takes a huge effort to get rid of them.

excavating (for a mind)
09-20-2017, 11:27 AM
I've given this spiel about deer, but it applies to rabbits, too.

There were always wild rabbits in central Texas, where I live, just as they've always lived in Colorado. But humans have created ideal conditions for deer and rabbits. We have driven out most of the predators that used to eat rabbits and deer. And now we plant yummy grass and flowers for them, and keep those plants watered all year long. We've done everything for those critters but roll out the red carpet and ring the dinner bell.

What happened to the jackrabbits, then?

When I visited Texas as a kid in the '60s, jackrabbits were everywhere, at least from Texarkana to San Antonio and all points in between. There were so many that, even being a kid, I grew tired of seeing them, running along side of the road, running across the road, squished in the middle of the road. Literally, we wouldn't go a day without seeing some. Armadillos were a bit more skittish; unless they were dead, you really had to look to find them.

When I moved there in the early 80's (less than 15 years later), the jackrabbits were nowhere to be found. Are you saying they are still around Austin?

Moriarty
09-20-2017, 11:27 AM
Thanks, all, for the responses. I know they are varmints, but it sure beats the roaches and other bugs that used to predominate back in Florida!

buddha_david
09-20-2017, 11:35 AM
Misread the thread title, again. (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?p=20488218#post20488218)

Saint Cad
09-20-2017, 12:06 PM
Don't eat 'em. Every year we get about half-a-dozen cases of tularemia in Weld County from people who trap rabbits on their front yard as dinner.

Saint Cad
09-20-2017, 12:07 PM
Hijack
When are we going to have a Denver Dopefest?

astorian
09-20-2017, 01:09 PM
What happened to the jackrabbits, then?

When I visited Texas as a kid in the '60s, jackrabbits were everywhere, at least from Texarkana to San Antonio and all points in between. There were so many that, even being a kid, I grew tired of seeing them, running along side of the road, running across the road, squished in the middle of the road. Literally, we wouldn't go a day without seeing some. Armadillos were a bit more skittish; unless they were dead, you really had to look to find them.

When I moved there in the early 80's (less than 15 years later), the jackrabbits were nowhere to be found. Are you saying they are still around Austin?

Not jackrabbits, but little cottontails? Definitely.

Hilarity N. Suze
09-20-2017, 02:48 PM
I moved to my current house a few years ago. At that time, you saw the occasional bunny, but also there were lots of foxes. The foxes got some kind of mange and, from what I understand, were trapped and destroyed so as not to spread it. This left lots of room for the bunnies.

Coyotes came in, but coyotes prefer to eat cats--because cats are also predators so they're not only having lunch, they're eating the competition. (Small dogs also.) So there are lots and lots of bunnies.

I don't know if the fox thing applies to my area only (SE Denver).