Geography

Animal That Took Over Australia

It’s the largest Island upon this planet, not a rabbit hole; that’s Australia being taken over by Rabbits!

Rabbits were first introduced in the ecology of Australia by us humans. Since then, they indeed have caused havoc for more than a century. They are the largest IslandIsland globally alongside being the sixth-largest country boasting 7.5 million km² of land. However, it is inhabited by no more than 26 million people. So then, who inhabits the rest of the empty lands? You know the answer… it’s the Rabbits.

If there is one thing that Australia can boast of is its unique biodiversity. Home to strange animals and beings such as the platypus, the kangaroo, and the wombat.

In the late 18th century, the European settlers first arrived at this IslandIsland called Australia. Along with them came a range of animal species, the biodiversity accumulated more and more and ever since, Australia has become home to no lesser than at least 56 invasive species. The list includes toads, feral cats, even ostriches. These animals came initially to be raised as pets for the settlers who came from Europe. They were sometimes used in sports, and Rabbit was one such species. Unfortunately, they soon started breeding out of control. It was majorly because of the lack of regulation around that time in animal control in Australia. Some of those escaped Rabbits kept breeding and gradually took over the entirety of the continent.

Sporting Spirit

These particular types of rodents, the Rabbits, were initially introduced as pets, and they were used for sport and other such reasons. They were also used as food. Rabbits were never Australian natives. Before the late 18th century, there was no Rabbit population in this part of the world. Guess their sporting spirit got them out of Europe to this distant land.

Escaping Captors

With the first European settlers came to these domestic animals, people started keeping them in small enclosed places at home. However, before they could realize how quickly these animals could breed, Australia was infested by them. Soon these breeds escaped their captors and started living on their own in the wilderness and produced out of control.

By 1827, a new colony of these feral rabbits was suddenly spotted in Tasmania. Even a newspaper clipping read that these common rabbits were becoming so many in numbers throughout this newfound colony that they seemed to have been running some of these large estates within the wilderness of Australia by thousands.

That’s where it all began. And the number of the Rabbits shot up to 200 million in less than seventy years. The rabbit population, to this day, has shown hardly any signs of change.

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