When the snow begins to fall, food sources for rabbits are reduced. Rabbits typically seek out young thin bark of trees and shrubs looking for food and moisture. During periods of ample snow coverage it may be a good idea to walk around your property and look for rabbit damage. Many times the gnawing and clipping of branches by rabbits don’t cause significant damage. In some cases girdling of young trees and shrubs can result in loss of plant material. If you see damage by rabbits you should remove the damaged branches by making a diagonal cut a quarter inch from the branch collar on the plant. Do not treat the pruned surface with any sealers. Pruning should be done in late winter before the plant comes out of dormancy. In some cases damaged surfaces can heal over depending on severity of girdling. Plants prone to rabbit damage can be protected by staking chicken wire around the plant or by wrapping young trees with a trunk guard. Be sure to remove chicken wire and trunk guards in the spring.