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NOS News•today, 11:00 am
Rabbits were released on Vlieland this weekend for the second time this year. This is necessary to restore the population on the island. Vlieland only had about fifty rabbits and that is not good for biodiversity.
The rabbits have now been joined by nineteen of their kind. They were caught on the Maasvlakte near Rotterdam and were placed in special holes in the dunes last weekend.
The rabbits must ensure that the Wadden Island does not become coarser as a result of desiccation and eutrophication. During eutrophication, ammonia from agricultural areas blows into nature. Dune plants such as grass and all kinds of mosses disappear as a result.
Rabbits are good diggers and can therefore ensure that lime from the sand can be carried further away by the wind. This is good for plants, flowers and insects that live in the dunes. Wheatears and shelducks also like to breed in empty rabbit holes.
At the beginning of this year, 26 rabbits were also released on Vlieland. They have now reproduced. “So they are doing what they are good at and that is why we are now continuing with this project,” forest ranger Anke Bruin-Kommerij of Staatsbosbeheer told Omrop Fryslân.
In a year’s time, rabbits will be released for the last time to get the population back to full strength.