NEWBORN wild rabbits left abandoned by their mother are being cared for at an animal hospital.
The bunnies – less than a couple of weeks old – had to be rescued after being found in Copnor, Portsmouth.
They had been left to fend for themselves by their mother after their nest – located in a garden – was disturbed.
The rabbits were found in a weak and dehydrated state by the people living at the house who took them to Brent Lodge Wildlife Hospital, in Sidlesham, near Chichester.
The quintet are now happy bunnies – being fed a special milk every two hours from 6am until midnight to get them strong.
Emma Pink, 24, who works at Brent Lodge, said: ‘They are less than 14 days old. I can fit two of them in my hand!
‘Their eyes are just starting to open. They have such little ears and their legs are so big in proportion to their body.
‘But they are absolutely adorable. They are so, so pretty.’
Ms Pink said many wild rabbit nests are disturbed at this time of year as people get back into their gardens.
Sadly for the newborn, any trace of human scent will scare off the mum.
She said: ‘Their nest was disturbed. Mum shoots off and abandons them. When the mum is disturbed, she doesn’t want to know them any more.’
The rabbits will stay at the hospital for several weeks until they are big enough to be released. They need to be big enough to defend themselves against other rabbits.
Ms Pink said: ‘These are our first babies of the year. Normally we rear about 40 rabbits, as well as birds, hedgehogs and all kinds of small mammals. This is just the beginning of a very busy season for us.’