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I have just come across this news. A small, privately run rabbit rescue has been forced to close due to neighbours complaints. Possibly just one "anti-rabbit" person has brought this about. This rescue had been approved to operated from this couples home. Then, right before Christmas, the council ordered it's closure.
From what I have read, they house just 16 rabbits. They also offer bonding services and boarding. Now those rescued rabbits plus the couples own pet rabbits are in jeopardy. I believe the community has rallied to house the rabbits before seizure. They may still need help so any Melbourne members that are able to help, please contact the rescue. info AT rabbitrunaway.org.au
Please offer your support of the Rescue by signing the petition: www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/saverabbitrunaway
News articles on this: free-press-leader.whereilive.com.au...y-shelter/
Rabbit Run-Away Orphanage owners Bryce and Judi Inglis with the bunnies they are housing. Picture: Jon Hargest Source: Herald Sun
Some excerpts from the article on the petition page I linked above.
The Yarra Ranges Council ordered their closure last week, after refusing to grant a permit to allow them to continue operating the orphanage on their property in Stanley Street, Olinda.
Neighbours objections about extra traffic, limited parking in the street, the odour from the property, and black rabbits seen running loose in adjoining properties, led to the council's unanimous decision on the refusal of the permit.
A supportive neighbours response
"As a very close neighbour, I can vouch for Bryce and Judi and their Orphans. They are, and always have been, very good peaceful neighbours. The property is vermin free, smell free, and so quiet that most of the time, I am not sure if they are even there or not. The same can not be said of many of those making unfounded accusations. Rabbit Runaway has on average less traffic than most of the surrounding locals. And please note...to date they have never lost one domestic rabbit. I suggest the "black rabbits " you mention are either totally fictitious or perhaps simply part of the natural population living in the surrounding bushland and nearby creek. Rabbit Runaway is not in any way responsible for Australias general rabbit population. Their plans for the property's development are in fact very sensitive to the needs of the environment and very carefully thought through. A fact that has been largely ignored. Both Bryce and Judi are highly educated in the care of domestic rabbits and in the care of the environment, and their advice is widely respected and sought after in educated circles. How one very tiny group of uneducated, malicious, slanderous troublemakers have gained so much voice with the local council is ridiculous. The accusations they have voiced are full of lies and untrue presumptions. The facts have been largely ignored. Its time the council listens to more than one silly old woman’s voice.."
Alot of the objection is supposedly about parking and the owners have been working to remedy this. Their driveway is not safe and needs work but the area, like many in Eastern Australia, has been effected by rain and flooding. Fact is though, visitors may legally park on the street anyway.
The council may even now rule that they can only keep 2 rabbits at the property. From their website, they have 8 of their own pet rabbits. What happens to them?!
It also states that they got into rescue when 2 stray rabbits came onto their property under the fence. I'm thinking the area has or had a feral rabbit problem and this couple would have been working to help reduce that. That's something the council should recognise!
Even though this may seem a parochial issue it's the matter of principle that I want to show support. And though a small capacity rescue, they are doing their bit. Every rabbit they take in relieves pressure on the shelters and allows another rabbit to be saved.
I've been following the facebook support page and it been quite a saga for this couple. I can't even begin to tell of all the petty & vindictive behaviour they have been subjected to. The hearing with Civil and Administrative Tribunal has finally arrived.
So a request for some Binky Bunny vibes please!
The won their appeal!
This is from the facebook page on Monday:
Save Rabbit Runaway Orphanage