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Thread: Newbie - just want to manage rabbits, advice please

  1. #1
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    Newbie - just want to manage rabbits, advice please

    Hey folks, to be upfront I don't have any real interest in being a hunter.

    But we have heaps of rabbits here, and I want to partake in pest control (and protect my vege garden!)

    I have been borrowing an air rifle, but 2 obvious problems
    - you have to get very close (maybe 15m) to make a shot. So many get away before I am close enough
    - you need to go finish the job. Often enough they still bolt, so there is a poor animal with a slug in its head.. i obviously want to make sure they die, but I also don't want a slow painful death/brain damaged animal running around. Cruel and ineffective.

    So, I am willing to go and do a firearms course, get the license and invest in a "proper" gun. PS are there no other costs aside from the registration fee? I was under the impression it was pricey.

    Given this isn't a hobby, its utilitarian for me - what do I need to look for to do this effectively?

    I don't care about gadgets, I don't want to get deep into the specs and options - i just need a simple and effective tool for a single job.

    Thanks for any guidance!

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sangster View Post
    Hey folks, to be upfront I don't have any real interest in being a hunter.

    But we have heaps of rabbits here, and I want to partake in pest control (and protect my vege garden!)

    I have been borrowing an air rifle, but 2 obvious problems
    - you have to get very close (maybe 15m) to make a shot. So many get away before I am close enough
    - you need to go finish the job. Often enough they still bolt, so there is a poor animal with a slug in its head.. i obviously want to make sure they die, but I also don't want a slow painful death/brain damaged animal running around. Cruel and ineffective.

    So, I am willing to go and do a firearms course, get the license and invest in a "proper" gun. PS are there no other costs aside from the registration fee? I was under the impression it was pricey.

    Given this isn't a hobby, its utilitarian for me - what do I need to look for to do this effectively?

    I don't care about gadgets, I don't want to get deep into the specs and options - i just need a simple and effective tool for a single job.

    Thanks for any guidance!
    the simplest way is to get a much more powerful air rifle- there are any number that will kill effectively out to 30-40 meters the best a little more - I found a slug just behind shoulder into lungs effective -dont panic about a scope learn to shoot with open sights _ scopes and air rifles can be a pain ( air rifles are tougher recoil for scopes than many rifles ) and if over 18 you do not need a firearm liscense
    Last edited by Barry the hunter; 24-09-2023 at 10:20 PM.
    nor-west, Micky Duck and XR500 like this.

  3. #3
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    Thank you. What sort of air rifle would do that effectively? I was under the impression you couldn't have powerful enough air rifles to kill from those distances.

  4. #4
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    @Sangster

    First question is are you in a built up area (are there people or houses within a reasonable distance from where your issues are? If so (and think 100 or 200 metres ) then shooting is possibly not your best choice.

    Firstly: I would strongly suggest looking getting a copy of the firearms code and reading / learning that whther you go down the license option or not. If you have questions about that I would then suggest visiting a local gun club or firearms shop and having a chat......Whether you get a license or not, the information in the arms code can be worth learning anyway.......There have been many unlicensed firearms owners who find themselves near firearms and have no idea how to behave, what to do iin order to stay safe. Don't be one of those....learn about them and if you ever find yourself near a firearm, you will know what you should and should not do.......

    Secondly I would look into trapping rabbits instead of huting them if you dont have a license (for firearms- especially if you have nearby neighbours.Trapping will likely be as effective if done correctly and probably cheaper in the long run. (it is also usually quieter so tends to annoy neighbours far less.....)

    And finally if you have a genuine iterest in becomig involved with firearms (hunting or target shooting) then apply fo your license and I would suggest joining a club like the NZDA or small bore club.
    rugerman, Micky Duck and 11mms like this.
    Intelligence has its limits, but it appears that Stupidity knows no bounds......

  5. #5
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    Thanks. There are two neighbours, who only live there part time, then people across the road divided by shelter belts (approx 50-80m from where I mostly shoot). But yeah, I hear you.

    And that's a good call. I was into gun clubs as a kid, so not a complete moron, but that was a long time ago.

    I was under the impression trapping is pretty ineffective - can you share what techniques are meant to be good?

  6. #6
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    Use the forum search window near the top right corner of the page, "Snare" got me these 2 results on the first page
    https://www.nzhuntingandshooting.co....rabbits-24722/
    https://www.nzhuntingandshooting.co....rabbits-60098/

  7. #7
    Member Grey Kiwi's Avatar
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    I like things that go 'Bang'.
    An air rifle? I think you would need to be looking at a PCP for humane kills, and a PCP needs a FAL to own one.
    If a .22 is out of the question due to neighbours, etc then (and I'm asking the question here guys) how would a suppressed .410 shotgun go? Presuming that @Sangster decides to get a FAL of course.
    Would that be quiet enough, but with enough oomph to flatten a bunny? My shotgun experience runs out at 12g.
    Artillery...landscape adjustment since 1300AD.

  8. #8
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    okay some of the good buggers on here are sending you down the path of trapping - okay and good fun but its a learning curve - a bit of a dying art - effective yes trapping better than snares - if you rang me one night I could explain how to trap ( 0276733881 )but I still go with a better air rifle - some will say air rifle to light - well my Diana air rifle killed bunnys cleanly out to 30 metres with a lung shot - possums no they were a little to solid - okay you have checked its all legal at your site now a rifle - 3 types cheap medium price and the best - the best are mainly german and will cost Diana Weirauch are two - check Youngs air guns Auckland for prices and a good spot for advice to - may have a decent reconditioned second hand - a .22 cal will be better kill for bunnys over a .177 cal - medium range Gamo Stoeger BSA will all do the job - cheap generally all made in China and junk - after all an air rifle for under $200 ask your self - be wary of advice from major retail stores they are trying to sell - but some may be okay ask around on forum - I know our local HF will give good advice - and happy bunny hunting and ya never know the thrill of the stalk rabbit casserole and we may make a hunter outa ya - I have shot hundreds of deer goats and still love an evening stalk after bunnys and hares - good practice - if you can hit a bunny at 30 metres standing shot you will hit deer just as well
    Last edited by Barry the hunter; 25-09-2023 at 10:54 AM.
    Grey Kiwi, 6x47 and Swanny like this.

  9. #9
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    the issue with trapping is the cat,both yours and the neighbours.
    air rifle pellet in thelungs and Mr Bunny will die reasonably quickly,headshot is ideal,but lungs is more certain. the old school waisted airrifle pellets in 500 bulk pack for $20 or less just as good as the expensive ones..and I dont like the super lightweight ones to gain speed,give me heavier one all day long,they will penertrate better.
    solid background is essential,a couple of strategically placed heavy sheets of plywood isnt silly idea...and may just save your bacon if the police ever turn up as some busy body has complained,you will be able to show your proactive approach to safety.sheets of iron work,but go PING when hit,attracting more attention that shot alone.
    are you inside a 50km zone/town boundary or semi rural...cant work it out from your reply above..... the suppressed .410,yeah maybe but your range will be limited to the same as now......Ive used 410 for more than 40 years and 25 yards is about limit of sure kills and to go subsonic you are slowing the payload down so will have less impact velocity/effective range.
    subsonic .22lr is the ultimate but that is 100% dependant on being rural and legally allowed to use it and the 100% safe shooting zones and backdrops/backstops. no lettuce or rose bush is worth putting a projectile through someones window or worse.
    75/15/10 black powder matters

  10. #10
    Member Jusepy's Avatar
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    There are alot of air rifles that will take down a rabbit . Look into a Cometa Fusion .177 or .22 . Youngs is a very good website to look into for decent ones.
    They are about $500 without a scope but there is one on trade me at the moment for $500 with a scope.
    Air rifles or slug guns have come along way and are pretty powerful.
    Talk to @Mintie on here as he is the air rifle genius.

    Another step would be to get your FAL and get a PCP air rifle. They are very expensive and you will need to buy a setup to refill them aswell.
    Patience Is A Virtue

  11. #11
    Member Jusepy's Avatar
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    Another way is too set up a hide , do some investigation into where their rabbit hole is. Set up close, with the wind direction in mind and wait for the furry little buggers to come out.
    Have a flask of coffee and a bite too eat as somedays they take along time to appear.
    Rabbits can cotton on pretty quick if you are hunting them so try different times of day to not make a pattern
    Micky Duck, Swanny and RV1 like this.
    Patience Is A Virtue

  12. #12
    Member Jusepy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sangster View Post
    Thank you. What sort of air rifle would do that effectively? I was under the impression you couldn't have powerful enough air rifles to kill from those distances.
    https://www.trademe.co.nz/a/marketpl...ing/4339694387
    Heres that cometa fusion
    Micky Duck likes this.
    Patience Is A Virtue

  13. #13
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    Hi
    If you like to get your firearm license, I suggest you start your application as soon as you can since the the whole process take longer time than before. My one in Auckland before Covid only took three month. Now, as I heard it `s about a year or more. For the tool, people has different perspectives and it also depends on what hunting ground you have there. Happy hunting
    Always In pursuit of my happiness...No matter the costs.

  14. #14
    Member Grey Kiwi's Avatar
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    Quick way may be to get yourself a Foxie dog. Probably not a pup as you would need time for it to grow, etc. But maybe a rescue dog/SPCA/etc?
    Those wee Fox Terriers are great on bunnies. May need to calm it down when it sees your cat though!
    A Foxie is lethal on bunnies, and what it can't catch it will scare away (maybe to your neighbours place...but that's their problem then).
    My old mate always had a Foxie or two on his place. The wee sods will do in a hare too (if they can catch it).
    Make a great wee companion dog too.
    Artillery...landscape adjustment since 1300AD.

  15. #15
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    Why not ask on here who lives close by and ask if they'll call in and look over your property for safe shooting. You might( most likely) find someone here with a powerful air rifle or pcp if that is all that's safe to use. And come and sort the rabbits for you. Most people are after places to hunt and then you don't have to invest in security, license, rifle etc. A win win . You get to meet one of the good guys on here, give them a place to hunt and get your rabbits sorted.

    Sent from my SM-A145F using Tapatalk

 

 

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