Science: Better Without Flopsy (

When myxomatosis was accidentally imported* into England in 1953, the homeland of Flopsy, Mopsy and Cottontail was horrified. Every rabbit from Penzance to the Orkneys, it seemed, was dying or dead. Stricken animals with grotesquely swollen heads hobbled aimlessly on highways, and carcasses lay stinking in ditches.

The London Times was swamped with letters from outraged bunny lovers. Some of the loudest objectors were fox hunters. In the absence of their preferred prey, ravenous British foxes turned to moles, rats, blackberries and garbage cans. They lost the stamina they used to build up...

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