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IT'S A TRAP! and TRAP HUNT SURVIVE

Bunny Bank - Multi-catch Rabbit Trap

$72.00

Bunny Bank - Multi-catch Rabbit Trap

$72.00
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BUNNY BANK - MULTI-CATCH RABBIT TRAP

HOLDS UP TO FIVE LIVE RABBITS AT A TIME

SCROLL DOWN TO THE BOTTOM OF THIS PAGE TO SEE HOW TO TRAP WILD DUCKS IN THIS TRAP

Designed by a Victorian rabbit trapper and made in Australia
Hot dipped galvanized steel spot welded wire mesh to last for decades of use
Double-ended for covering small and large burrow openings
Humane, live-capture cage rabbit traps - no blood and guts or poisons

The Bunny Bank is a 98 cm long, double-ended and a sturdy mesh rabbit cage made of 2mm thick Australian-made galvanized wire with one inch legal spacings. It is rigid and built to last. Bequeath the Bunny Bank in your will to someone who appreciates it after it outlasts you.

Healthy, chemical-free wild rabbits have made great meals in many cultures, including Australia, for centuries.
Cook rabbit as an alternative to chicken to bring a diverse range of good meals to the table.
Freshly killed or stockpiled frozen raw rabbits also make good, natural dog food.

Rabbit have fed millions of Australians for over 100 years. If you have to kill a feral animal, rather than just pointlessly waste the carcass, use the rabbit meat which is high in protein and low in fat. Cooked with moisture such as a rabbit casserole, pressure cooker, rabbit pie, rabbit stew or cover in bacon for roasting, it is excellent eating. Rabbit used to be cheap, available meat and kept many families fed. Today itt is an expensive delicacy at restaurants today. Your Bunny Bank will pay for itself many times over in good fresh meat for the table and home freezer.

For generations, Australian rabbit fur was sold to Akubra and made into felt for World War 1 and 11 military slouched hats and for daily use hats.

Rabbit recipes 1
Rabbit recipes 2
Rabbit recipes 3
Rabbit recipes 4
Rabbit recipes 5

There is a farming expression - three rabbits, three years, three million.

24 European rabbits, a feral animal, were imported from Britain in the 1800's and  introduced near Geelong, Victoria, for game hunting. Being very rapid breeders, rabbits soon spread uncontrolled across the country and became a massive and permanent environmental catastrophe that is here to stay. Each rabbit trapped is one less to breed up.

Rabbits cause serious erosion, pasture loss, kill off native vegetation, breed up in biblical plague proportions and compete with native animals and livestock for food and pasture. Their digging, ring-barking of native shrubs and orchards, and eating pasture causes serious environmental and farming problems.

Rabbit numbers are making a comeback especially with good feed around. Their national numbers now exceed the pre-Calici virus population. It is law that land owners must eradicate rabbits from private property. Recent estimates of financial losses to Australian farmers caused by rabbits is around two hundred million dollars annually.

Serrated metal jaw traps to trap animals have been illegal to use or sell for years in Australia because they smash bones. In Victoria you get two years jail time and $10,000.00 fines for using the old serrated jaw traps. In Queensland, it is a $40,000.00 fine. These regulations are enforced. IT'S A TRAP also supplies soft-jaw leg-hold traps that have been completely re-designed and are approved for use for rabbits, feral cats, foxes and wild dogs.

BUNNY BANK BENEFITS
Unlike trapping rabbits just with ferrets and setting a rabbit net over every burrow opening to catch a single rabbit at a time then resetting the net immediately, the Bunny Bank works without ferrets and without you having to be there. One Bunny Bank can hold up to five live rabbits at a time without having to reset it. The Bunny Bank allows for humane live rabbit capture without poisons, shooting or leg hold traps.

If intending to eat your catch, rabbits can be kept alive in a breathable hessian bag tied at the top so they can be transported home for despatch. Unlike hares, rabbits must be gutted and cleaned within 20 minutes of despatch or they spoil and are unfit for consumption. Do not cut the guts when cleaning or the rabbit meat will be tainted. Some people collect the rabbit liver, heart and kidneys for cooking, especially for rabbit pies and terrines. This fresh offal is also useful for checking the health of the rabbit. Common sense prevails - never eat diseased rabbits.

If you are trapping for food for the table or freezer, foxes and other meat-eating predators are unlikely to be able to get to the rabbits inside the sturdy Bunny Bank, especially if you have the the trap staked to the ground with tent pegs so it cannot be rolled upside down for the trap doors to fall open.

BIOSECURITY
The Bunny Bank is useful for researchers to trap live rabbits to test, measure, count and check for virus in the area.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR USE
Live capture means check your traps at least once a day. Good trapping practice means wild animals are not to be abandoned in a trap for a long slow death by exposure and starvation.

Sit the Bunny Bank the right way up, that is with the hinged trap doors hanging down from the roof of the trap. Gravity on these angled doors is what traps the rabbits.

TRAPPING AT RABBIT BURROWS
Wedging the trap in burrow entrances is one way to use the Bunny Bank.

Choose a burrow opening that has fresh rabbit comings and goings for setting the trap, not at a burrow that has cobwebs across the entrance or other signs of dis-use.

The smaller pointy end of the trap is inserted into smaller rabbit burrow openings. The other end of this trap has three mesh doors that fold out to cover larger burrow openings. When using the bigger flap end, place a rock behind each of the three doors to hold them in place.

There are small burrows with a few entrances and seriously large burrows with many entrances. Two BunnyBanks used at the same time, places lift and right  on the really big burrows speeds up results.

Block off as many of the other burrow openings in the warren that you can find with rocks, wood or whatever is to hand. Look for small and sneaky hidden pop holes in the outer extremities of the warren. This puts put capture odds in your favour. If you light a small smokey fire of dried gum leaves and twigs or newspaper placed inside a burrow entrance, (not on a bushfire day) especially in a lower burrow if on a hill, the rising smoke will come out of other burrow entrances so the sneaky burrows out on the edges in the long grass show up so that they can also be blocked with rocks or wood.

Rabbits are not going to stay underground forever. They have to come out for food and water. Once the other burrow exits are blocked off, the rabbit's only way out is into the Bunny Bank.

Both Bunny Bank entrances have a one-way wire mesh door inside that the rabbits easily push past and enter the trap. This hinged flap drops from the top at an angle behind the rabbit, locking them inside the trap. Rabbits generally (but not always) exit the warren in the evening to head for a feed. Three rabbits can eat as much valuable pasture as one sheep.

Depending on the angle of the ground at the burrow entrance, a tent peg inserted in the left and right outside walls of the Bunny Bank about midway from the entrance can help secure it in place, if it needs stabilizing. And/or put a rock under the trap to level it if needed. You can judge this on your land.

To block off any small escape gaps around the Bunny Bank at the burrow entrance, insert scrunched-up newspaper in any gaps as rabbits do not dig through this, compared filling small gaps with soil, which they can dig through.

Check to see that the warren chosen is an active warren, not a deserted one. Look for fresh rabbit droppings and their recent footprints in the dug-out soil. More Bunny Banks used at once means more trapped rabbits sooner. Discounts apply for bulk purchases. The bigger the rabbit warren, the more Bunny Banks can be put to use for faster results. Place one trap over towards one side of the big warren and the other trap over towards the opposite side of the warren. Or more if it is very large. Or more again if you are setting multiple warrens at once.

TRAPPING WITH FERRETS
Rabbits are prey animals. If you own (or borrowed) a ferret, a natural predator of the rabbit, in combination with the Bunny Banks, rabbits come out faster when they get a whiff of the predator hunting inside their burrow. Do not put the ferret in through the same hole as the Bunny Bank to avoid ferret scent in it.

You don't have to use ferrets with this trap but if you do use them, it should speed up the exit of the rabbits into the Bunny Bank. Give the ferret something to eat before putting it in the burrow so they are not as hungry to kill a rabbit underground and possibly block themselves in behind a rabbit that they have killed, but not so much food that they have an underground snooze on the job. At the end of ferreting, then feed the ferrets their normal meal and water as a reward for their work. They get used to this reward routine.

Once the rabbits get the smell of the predator, their instinct is to run and they tend to exit the burrow in quick-time. This speeds up the trapping process. You may find your ferret exiting into the Bunny Bank. Remove it as rabbits won't enter the trap if a ferret is in there.

If you have a ferret stuck down the burrow, usually locked in between two rabbits it has killed, or if you see a stray ferret around a burrow, put a small piece of meat just inside the burrow entrance and place another bigger piece of meat up the back end of the Bunny Bank which is set into the burrow entrance to entice the ferret out of the burrow into the BunnyBank. Come back the next morning to see if the ferret is waiting inside the trap.

After a ferret has been inside a BunnyBank and before using the trap again for rabbits, thoroughly clean the trap of predator smells or no rabbit will go near it. Avoid using chemicals and detergents. Rinse the trap off well with water and a scrubbing brush. After washing, a light spray of Eucalyptus oil will help mask predator scents, or smoke the whole trap for a few minutes over a small smokey fire of dried gum leaves and twigs for a few minutes (not on bushfire days) to remove predator scents, including yours.

TRAPPING AT RABBIT RUNS
Rabbit runs can be seen where grass is flattened as rabbits habitually come and go through at the same gap at the fence line. The Bunny Bank can be used at the fenceline where there is a rabbit run and/or if the burrows are not on your land, depending on the type of fence.

Walk the fence boundary to find all the rabbit runs. There may be more than one. Bunny Banks can be placed at each rabbit run so that no rabbits enter or leave the property without being trapped. This method is dependent on the fence type. Best used with chicken wire fence netting or mesh fences that will funnel rabbits into the Bunny Bank. Widely spaced single wire fences are not useful for this trapping method as rabbits can easily enter and exit the property from anywhere.

Tie the three door ends of the Bunny Bank to the fence at the rabbit run or put rocks behind the three doors to hold them open. Tie the two internal trap doors up to the roof line so that both ends of the trap are unobstructed. Keep the food supply up inside the trap for around a week or so and observe that the food is being eaten. This rabbit food inside the trap rewards and educates them for using the Bunny Bank as their run-through.

The Bunny Bank can be used at other obvious rabbit runs that you can put the trap to allow them to run through it, such as under a house or shed. You may need to block off multiple entry points under a building and put the Bunny Banks in the main run throughs.

Trail small amounts of rabbit food outside both trap entrances about a meter out to give them the general direction and lead them into the trap entrance where the main feed is. Place the bigger quantities of food inside around the middle of the trap, down one side. Bait the trap with food that is more appealing and nutritious for rabbits to eat than grass - experiment with wheat, oats, corn, carrot, lettuce, tagasaste (tree lucerne) and fennel which smells like licorice and wafts around. Rabbits like eating lucerne as commercial lucerne growers know. A fistful of fresh green, sweet-smelling lucerne from the middle of a bale placed along the inside wall of the Bunny Bank wafts around and smells attractive to rabbits who go in the trap and eat then exit the other side. Do not have food block their travel through the Bunny Bank.

After around a week or so of free feeding and educating many rabbits to use the Bunny Bank as their run-through, untie and drop both internal trap doors. The next time they use the trap as a run through, it is a one way trip. They are not coming out. As long as there is plenty to eat inside the Bunny Bank for rabbit number one, numbers two to five can follow on inside for multiple catches at once. The sooner you empty the Bunny Bank of rabbits, the sooner the next batch can be trapped.

EMPTYING THE BUNNY BANK
To get live rabbits out when using them for food, stand the Bunny Bank vertically on the smaller end and pull the rabbits out of the larger end of the trap. Grab the rabbit by the skin on the back of the neck to avoid it furiously scratching your hands with its back legs. Avoid tipping the Bunny Bank upside down as the trap doors at each end will fall open with gravity and the trapped rabbits will make an immediate run for it. Running/escaping is their defence mechanism.


Check that your trapped rabbits for eating are healthy and disease-free. Myxomatosis can spread to pets. Symptoms include lethargy, sitting still, watery eyes and looking unhealthy.

To keep rabbits alive and fresh until you are ready to despatch them, up to five live rabbits can be kept inside the Bunny Bank which can be covered with an old towel or similar to minimize stress which affects the meat quality. Do not allow the Bunny Bank to be turned upside down or on its side with rabbits in it. The trap doors are hinged from the top and this relies on gravity to keep the rabbits inside. If you have more than five live rabbits to transport, a good-sized hessian bag with a tie at the top allows them to breathe and you can carry them back alive.

If you are not using the rabbits for food, another way to despatch them is to put the whole Bunny Bank (keeping it the right way up) with rabbits in them into a large garbag or wheelie bin bag liner. Cut a 20 mm slit in the sealed end of the bag and attach the open end with tape to a garden hose. Teh other end of the hose is tied to the exhaust pipe of a cold petrol motor (most carbon monoxide poison). Run the vehicle (in open air) for a few minutes and leave the trap and rabbits in the garbag for a further few minutes. Like euthanizing at the vets, they just go to sleep permanently. Set the trap up for the next days catch.

HOW TO CLEANLY PROCESS RABBITS FOR FOOD AND FUR
Process the dead rabbit by removing the internal organs/guts within 20 minutes of despatch or the meat will spoil. Place the cleaned and skinned rabbit in a transportable chiller or refrigerate/freeze it without delay.

To kill a rabbit humanely, a standard and government-approved method is to grab it by the back feet with one hand and restrain it. With the other hand placed behind its ears and around the neck, twist its head fast at 180 degrees with a sudden snap action of your wrist. This breaks the rabbits neck and it dies immediately. Be decisive and not half-hearted or tentative with this method.

Hold the freshly-killed rabbit by the head and firmly squeeze down from under the rib cage and over the belly down to the tail to discharge urine from the bladder inside the rabbit before skinning it.

If the fur is taken off in one piece, stretched and air-dried with flesh side out over a strong, bent U-shaped wire hanging up in a shed, dried skins can be collected to have a good quantity to be sold by the kilogram for processing or tanned by yourself using the fatty brain from the rabbit for supple fur and to make into into pelts, hats, bedding or clothes. Or cover the the flesh side with salt to preserve it and roll it up into a ball for scraping and tanning later. Bugs will get it if you leave it for too long.

Use sturdy metal snips or a sharp knife to clip off the feet and tail at the joints. Cut the head off cleanly for dog food or keep the rabbits brains for brain tanning and softening of the pelt. Push both back legs up through the pelt to avoid cutting the pelt.  See the outdoors video below for how this is done. Pull the fur up off the carcass from the bottom to the top of the rabbit without tearing it so that the fur comes off intact in one cylindrical piece. Stretch this fur over the U-shaped wire.

Another way is to cut the skin straight up the belly of the rabbit and peel off the fur to stretch it out and dry it in the sun, nailed or tied to a timber frame as a flat pelt. Fat needs to be scraped off the fresh skin or the pelt will go rancid. Scrape with a blade at an angle to the pelt to avoid cutting holes in it by accident.

Pelt removal and scraping is best done and easier while the rabbit carcass is still warm. Proficiency comes with practice.

In the old days, in a rabbit processing factory (our old Kyneton shop was a rabbit processing factory for 35 years from 1944 - ironical co-incidence), the top paid employees were The Skinners. They were paid piece work - by the rabbit. A gun Rabbit Skinner could skin seven rabbits a minute, six hours a day while standing knee deep in rabbit bits. They took rabbits off the pre-loaded wooden poles, skinned and hung the meat carcasses on the hooked chain overhead. This chain was attached to a motor that moved the rabbits along to the packing area. The Skinners hit the slops at night then showed up the next day to do it all over again.

RABBIT HISTORY BOOK
All this Australian rabbit history is in the fascinating book we sell, The Rabbit King, the life of Jack McRaith, who started trading rabbits as a 15 year old living in Essendon. He went on to make millions in the tough, competitive and sometimes shonky rabbit industry. Our ex-rabbit processing factory in Kyneton run by Harry Portelli was a direct competitor to Jack McCraith in Melbourne who bought our skins when we were outer Melbourne kids who grew up on rabbit meat. This biography with photos of the times is a great read for yourself or as a gift. It is a compulsive page turner that a lot of Australians will identify with its real-life story.

CLEANING THE RABBIT
To gut the skinned rabbit, start from the bottom end and very shallowly slide a sharp knife just under the fur, up to the rib cage without cutting deeper into the guts, bile bag and bladder which will taint the meat and make it inedible. Pull the innards down and out into a bucket, starting from under the rib cage. Keep the liver, heart and kidneys to check that the rabbit organs are healthy and good for use in the kitchen as pate, pies, stock, frying or terrine ingredients. The offal is full of very rich nutrients which is why foxes like eating them.

A gutting knife with its hooked blade end is a good investment. It only goes in deep enough to cut through the skin. A gutting knife is also good for gutting deer and other game animals for the same reason.

Bury the guts in the garden as compost or for planting under new fruit trees and rhubarb as nitrogen fertilizer.

There are other ways to properly process rabbits for food and fur. This demonstration video is from a hunter in the UK who cleanly processes fresh rabbits out in the field.

FREIGHT
Up to four Bunny Banks in the one order will go through the Australia Post system.
Shipping is from Kyneton, VIC or call into the shop Tuesdays to Saturdays to avoid shipping costs.
Shipping price is determined by cubing length, width, height and then weight to your destination.
Bulk orders too large in size for Australia Post require individual shipping quotes to your town or suburb.
Please contact IT'S A TRAP! for a shipping quote on bigger orders.
Or you can send your courier to Kyneton to collect. Please phone us first to organize.


For order sizes that are within the Australia Post limits, view your individual freight price in our website by adding the product and quantity into the shopping cart, clicking on ESTIMATE SHIPPING AND TAX, entering in your location then click ESTIMATE SHIPPING AND TAX again.


FREE FOOD FORAGING AND COOKING

HOW TO TRAP WILD DUCKS WITH THIS TRAP

Wild duck flocks foul farm dam water with their copious amounts of manure which is not good for livestock, aquaculture, irrigation or in dam water pumped for household water use. Wild ducks also eat and destroy valuable commercial rice crops. In drought areas, remaining dam water quality is even more precious for agriculture and horticulture. 

Instructions

1  Fold the three mesh doors back from the larger trap entrance leaving this end completely open

2  Wire the internal hinged trap door up to the ceiling so it will not drop and is flat with the ceiling to leave this end of the trap fully open and unobstructed

3  Dig a square trench on the inside wall of a dam or other places where wild ducks congregate

4  Trench width is the width of the trap for a snug fit

5  Trench depth is the height of the trap at the far, closed end of the trap

6   Doesn’t matter if the open and top entrance of the trap height is above ground level where the ground slopes away but make the floor of the trap entrance level with the surrounding ground so ducks do not have to step up to enter the trap

7  Sit the cage trap inside the trench

8  Butt the smaller, pointy end of the trap up to the end wall of the trench to block it off

9  Bait inside the trap with a handful of dried corn down the far end and a trail of corn over the floor of the trap, plus a trail of corn about a metre or so long leading into the trap to attract them – don’t overfeed ducks outside the trap.

Ducks eat the corn and follow the food trail. They walk into the trap for more food. Ducks cannot walk backwards. Multiple ducks can be trapped at the same time with this long trap. They cannot spread their wings to fly inside the trap which is also not wide enough for them to turn around and walk out. Ducks are stuck. Check traps morning and evening to remove live trapped ducks. Re-bait the trap with more corn for the next catch. For large infestations of wild ducks, such as in commercial rice crops, setting more than one duck trap at the same time catches larger quantities sooner. Check your state regulations to identify protected duck species which can be released unharmed if trapped.

Healthy unprotected and fresh feral ducks make seriously good meals. Or clean and freeze ducks for later to feed the family.

Our Fox Lights are also great deterrents for wild ducks that invade dams and rice crops.

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