Ed Cook offers some key tips and why a Hushpower .410 fits the bill

Q: Lamping rabbits is getting harder around here because they are getting lamp shy! Or is it a case of leaving well alone for a few weeks? In your experience how long will it take for rabbits to ‘forget’ about the dangers of seeing a light at night?

A: Rabbits are not stupid and never forget the lamp. The more they see of it the sooner and quicker they will run.

When they’re really twitchy they will even run before the beam gets near them.

Some people say using different coloured filters helps in situations like this and I have to admit I’ve had some success with this ploy – especially when using a moderated rifle.

lamping rabbits

On the hunt for rabbits in a dark paddock

Not a fan of lamping rabbits

  • Personally I don’t consider lamping an effective means of rabbit control because it only helps keep a cap on numbers, nothing more.
  • My approach is to get rid of most of the rabbits by either ferreting or trapping and then mop up the stragglers with a lamp and rifle.
  • Done this way you will find rabbits are less lamp shy. There are fewer rabbits on the ground and so you will not be educating too many others.
  • On the other hand if you lamp areas where numbers are high you will frighten and educate 10 bunnies to every one you shoot.
  • Alternatively you can open the season with a .22 then move to .17hmr, once the rabbits have clocked what’s happening.
  • After that, try changing filters and see if it helps before switching to a 12 bore from the back of pick up truck.

I think the best way forward is to use a Hushpower moderated .410 from a 750cc quad.

We use Hushpower shotguns a lot but mainly at night.

I now rarely use a rifle for lamping rabbits as these moderated .410s are far more effective, especially when used from a quad bike on arable fields.

The .410 isn’t much louder than an air rifle which is great because it doesn’t disturb other rabbits, or people living in the vicinity.

Hushpower .410 shotgun

Hushpower .410 shotgun

Gun reviews: Hushpower .410 shotgun: This moderated Hushpower .410 shotgun is based on an American Mossberg 500 pump gun.

And the beauty of the quad is that the 750cc engine quickly reduces the range at which the rabbits are shot.