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Rare rabbits returned to Vale Urban Farm

Rare rabbits returned to Vale Urban Farm

Owner says social media and news coverage helped get the bunnies home.
Rare rabbits returned to Vale Urban Farm
A Schenectady High School student from the Vale Youth Program pets one of the bunnies.
Photographer: Melissa MacKinnon / Special to The Daily Gazette

SCHENECTADY — A pair of rabbits believed to have been stolen from the Vale Urban Farm have been returned to their hutches. 

The American blue rabbits are a rare breed, and one of them is expecting a litter in three weeks. They were estimated to be worth about $500 in total.

Owner Melissa MacKinnon, garden educator at the Vale Urban Farm, said police were notified of the rabbits' return, but that she will not pursue charges. 

She added that the farm was contacted by a couple who bought the rabbits off of the street, and upon seeing a Daily Gazette report shared on social media, they returned the bunnies to the farm. 

"I was amazed at how many people were coming by," MacKinnon said of the response. "They were both sad and angry." 

The farm has increased security measures now that the rabbits are back home.

"They're back in their hutches with padlocks on them and another security camera," MacKinnon said.

During the apparent heist, a third American blue rabbit was able to escape the thieves and is now reunited with the stolen pair. 

MacKinnon previously described the rabbits as "community therapy," making them difficult to put a monetary value on, but she confirmed Friday that the couple who returned the rabbits was given the promised $500 reward.

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