Culling of rabbits begins on island of Lemnos

Authorities have declared open season on the wild rabbits of the northeastern Aegean island of Lemnos, where the population is estimated to have exceeded 300,000 over an area of around 200 square kilometers.

The burgeoning rabbit population has wreaked havoc on crops, destroying entire tracts of farmland before the summer harvest, according to farmers.

“Wild rabbits have spread across almost half the island, destroying everything,” Lemnos Deputy Mayor Dimitris Boulotis said on Thursday. “There is nothing left in the areas with the biggest problems but dirt -- not even a speck of green.”

In response to calls from farmers for measures against the spread of the wild rabbit population, authorities have launched a culling program running through June 15, with 2 euros being offered per rabbit head. The budget for the program is set at 30,000 euros. 

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