Wyndham residents are being reminded to keep an eye on their pets when visiting public open spaces as the latest round of the rabbit control program kicks off.

For the six weeks from March 20, licensed contractors will be laying bait in order to control the local rabbit population.

Council is legally required to control the number of rabbits, which have been declared pests.

The poison being used as part of the rabbit control program is slow acting and requires multiple doses to affect the animals.

Council has stated it is unlikely that pets will be poisoned if they eat one of the baits intended for rabbits.

Cr Heather Marcus said local vets were also being informed when the baiting was taking place so they could prepare antidote supplies in case a pet eats a large amount.

“Throughout Australia, rabbits are believed to be the largest known factor in the loss of native species,” she said.

“They cause serious damage to Wyndham’s natural environment and council’s rabbit control program helps to minimise and reverse this damage.”

The program has been running since 2000. There have been no reported deaths of pets or native animals as a result.