ANTIOCH (KPIX 5) — People living in the Almondridge neighborhood in Antioch are being overwhelmed by an invasion of bunny rabbits and they’ve learned it’s possible to have too much of a good thing.
The whole thing started in December last year when neighbors in a cul-de-sac of Wilson Court noticed a few little rabbits sitting on their lawns.
“I called my wife over to show it to her because we all thought it was pretty cute at first,” said homeowner Mike Christopher.
But by March, like the rabbits themselves, the problem multiplied.
“There were rabbits all over the street, all over the sidewalks, all over the grass and it slowly went…actually pretty fast, it went from seven to ten to about 50 rabbits just all over the neighborhood,” Christopher said. “And from then, it started to not be cute anymore.”
During the heat of the day, the bunnies hide out in the shade underneath residents’ cars, which has people nervous about even pulling out of their driveways.
But in the evening, they come out and Christopher and his neighbor Darrell Stovall say the rabbits dig holes under fences and houses and dine on the roots of their plants.
“There’s always a deep hole where they’re digging in the palm tree, every time…both palm trees, to the roots,” Stovall said.
“Anytime you have to go outside, it would be rabbit pellets. You’d clean them all up and sweep your driveway and then, boom, they’re back,” Christopher said.
Christopher says he’s tried collecting the babies for animal rescue, but more just keep arriving. They say the rabbits are coming from a house across their back fence and they believe someone living there may have a pet hoarding problem. But it is a problem that is affecting the entire neighborhood.
“It’s sad because…take responsibility for your animals. Keep them in your yard, that’s what I keep saying. Keep them in your yard, not in someone else’s yard,” Stovall said.
So far, neighbors say Antioch Animal Control hasn’t done much and the problem may be spreading. Social media posts from neighborhoods more than a mile away and across Highway 4 are now reporting bunnies in that area.
It’s possible they’re reproducing in the wild in a large open field, but someone also reported seeing a man releasing four rabbits into Hillcrest Park recently.
The neighbors are hoping city officials will begin taking this problem more seriously and take action against the people they say are actually causing the problem. Antioch Animal Control has reportedly spoken with the people who are raising the rabbits, but the agency was not available for comment on Sunday.