Winter is the best time to net a few rabbits for the pot. Here is a family of lurchers. Dam and with her two sons. This particular cross is a Saluki x Whippet. Stamina, speed and patients is what is needed to catch rabbits when ferreting. Good strong feet too as they’ll more than likely work around brambles and dense cover.

In most places no nets are used. The net is usually covered over the rabbit hole, so when the rabbit bolts after being pushed out by the ferret, it’s then captured in the net which closes in on itself. The lurcher replaces the net and hopefully snaps them up. A good ferreting dog will be quiet and still, always listening below ground at the rabbits as thud their feet alerting the others there’s danger. As the ferret enters the rabbit warren you must be silent otherwise the rabbits will not bolt and corner themselves. This is where you might have to dig down to the ferret that has captured its prey and refusing to let go. The ferrets wear collars with detectors so their owner above ground using a hand held machine can detect the whereabouts by listening to the tone of the bleeps. These are very good and can travel far down below ground 8ft plus.

When the rabbits are caught they are killed instantly. Once cleaned and jointed they are put in the freezer. Stews, rabbit pie and curries are made from them. Sometimes the ferrets will have a whole rabbit to themselves. They will eat the whole carcass and it’s perfect food for them.


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