WORKING: Ferreting in the Snow

Snow and sub zero temperatures took us from January through to February and although we had seen some hard frosty days a lot of the under growth of nettles had still not died back. I took advantage of the snow blanket and investigated some of the rabbit warrens even though many entrances were blocked with snow the rabbit tracks,pellets and small amounts of fur provided me with evidence of well worked establishments.

RabbitFootstep

One of the larger rabbit warrens I work is situated along a boundary hedge and an embankment most of which has been decimated by the rabbits which inhabit that area, on one side of the hedge is about sixty entrances this then leads onto another section of hedgerow with a further twenty plus.

I find long netting the best option for areas like this with just an odd few 3 foot nets on the bolt holes which are situated further out on the field.

bob long net

bob long net

The benefits of ferrets working freely together when long netting are obvious as they do so with great ease and speed, skilfully checking every burrow in their pursuit of rabbits they will usually do this more than once as tunnels often lead from one burrow to another.

albino in the snow

polecat in the snow

The only notable effect of ferreting in snowy conditions is that rabbits will not readily leave their warrens, this could be due to their vulnerability on land as their usual camouflaged ground cover has suddenly become white thus making them easy prey. We faired well on this particular day and took home a good catch.

Long netting in snow where the ground cover is no more than 2-3 inches in depth will make for a wet net if nothing else and you will need to have good drying facilities for hanging up 100 yarders.

In some areas where there are heavy snowfalls long netting would be virtually impossible because your net would not only be inoperable but also become clogged with snow, apart from that frozen ground will prove hard work when pegging any net.

 

Copyright 2004 Bob Bradury