A WETHERBY woman has found an unusual solution to the problem of rabbits over populating a cemetery- she will use her pet ferrets to hunt them out.
The increasing rabbit population is causing problems at Hallfield Lane Cemetery in Wetherby- with several rabbits eating plants and flowers on the graves.
Now Carol Brown, 38, of Third Avenue, will use her ferrets to hunt out the rabbits after concerns were raised by Wetherby Town Council.
Carol, who lives near the cemetery, said: “On a morning walking our dogs we have seen maybe ten or 15 rabbits at a time eating the plants and flowers on the graves in the cemetery, which is ruining the look of the area and is causing a big problem.
“The rabbits are also quite large and are eating a lot of the nice flowers left on the gravestones, so I suggested after talking to the cemetery keeper, we use our ferrets to help stop this.”
Carol, who has nine ferrets altogether and has kept them since she was a teenager, said the ferrets will hunt out the rabbits through burrows in the cemetery and will then be killed humanely using special equipment.
The use of the ferrets which has been approved by Wetherby Town Council last week, will take place early in morning before 7.30am so relatives visiting the cemetery later in the day are not disturbed, the council said.
Town clerk Barbara Ball confirmed the new method will be used on a trial basis until the end of September.
She said: “The rabbit population has increased in the cemetery recently and hopefully this will solve the problem as ethically as possible. It is not very nice for loved ones who leave flowers when they are being eaten away and we will be doing this as an experimental period at first to see if it helps solve the problem.”