2008-08-21

Hares to research!

I was asked by Gary of Potters Blog, if these were the same type of rabbit they see in NY state.
No, these are White-tailed Jackrabbits and according to this site, their habitat is usually Western Canada and the States although they do range as far east as South-western Ontario and Wisconsin. In winter these rabbits will turn white, ranging from pure white here in the North, to just a bit of white in places South that don't get much snow.


There are Black-tailed Jackrabbits, but their habitat seems to be mostly desert SW & Mexico. I couldn't find anything that said they ventured North and East.

What you probably have are European Hares. They were brought over as domesticated farm animals and have since made themselves at home in the wild.

Phew, enough research for one day! I can't remember if that photo above will be in focus if you enlarge it, but he is eating! You can clearly see the white tail though which is why I included it.

Have a good day all.

EDIT: Frank kindly pointed out in comments that they have cottontails in Ontario. I didn't even think of researching them. They could also be what Gary is seeing in NY. So, thanks Frank.

20 comments:

Frank Baron said...

I've only ever seen a couple of jackrabbits here in Ontario and don't recall what colour their tails were.

But there's a very young cottontail who's set up shop in my backyard - to Benny's great delight. Something new to chase. Thank goodness he doesn't seem all that concerned about catching it though.

kcinnova said...

We've had a jack rabbit run through our backyard in El Paso, TX, and WOW was it ever fast!!

In our current yard, we just have the "cute little bunnies" which are probably European Hares.
This explains the very different facial appearance between your rabbit pics and the ones I see daily.
Thanks for the research!

Reb said...

Frank, they were probably white-tail. I didn't even look at cottontails, maybe that is what Gary is seeing around his place. Good thing bunnies are fast, give Benny his exercise.

Kcinnova, Jacks are fast, but as Frank pointed out above, maybe they are cottontails.

bunnygirl said...

There are jackrabbits and cottontails on my father's New Mexico property. The jackrabbits are huge and fast-- I've never managed to get a good look at one. The cottontails are more tame and like to frolic in the yard or just sit and watch to see if I make any dangerous-looking moves.

Reb said...

BG, our jackrabbits here are fairly accustomed to people, being city jackrabbits. They will just sit and wait to see how close you are getting before bounding off. You can tell the old ones, they only take one or two big hops, the younger ones take off running.

Leah J. Utas said...

How about those bunnies. It was cool to see how close the hare came to your apartment last week. Most interesting.
You sure get your share of good hare days.

Jay said...

Rabbits are pretty cool. I don't know what kind we have around here, but they sure are cute!

Reb said...

Leah, yes, we sure do..*shakes head*!

Jay, they are cute, I keep an eye on them so I know when the weather is turning.

Hilary said...

Like Frank, I've only ever seen a couple of jackrabbits but we've got hundreds of cottontails in the neighbourhood. They're quite amusing because they can be right out in the open - like on the park path, but figure that you can't see them if they sit very, very still. Then they'll fun off in a total panic. Thanks for the hare-raising experience. ;)

the Bag Lady said...

We have rabbits around here on occasion. Don't see them often, but see their tracks occasionally. No clue what kind they are, but I'm assuming they are jackrabbits....

Good post, sis! Let me know when those bunnies start turning, would ya?
It's almost freezing here this morning... F*ck!

Missicat said...

Cute munching bun! I used to see bunnies when I lived further out in the 'burbs, but they were tiny little brown things.

gary rith said...

Ah HA! Yes, fuzzy wuzzy little bunnies here, not like the athletic jack rabbits you're showing!

Reb said...

Hilary, yeah, it's funny when they do that. Of course, if you were one of their natural predators it would work. ;)

Sis, when I see them turning, you will probably hear the scream way up there. ;)

Missicat, we get them right downtown here! Just look for a green area, I'm sure they're there.

Gary, there ya go, it never hurts to ask and you learn something.

Crabby McSlacker said...

I had no idea bunnies came in so many different varieties!

They're all cute as far as I'm concerned, whether rabbits or hares or whatever.

Reb said...

Crabby, there are quite a lot of different types. Funny what you learn when you start to research.

David Cranmer said...

I was raised in upstate NY and never would have been able to tell you if I was looking at a jackrabbit or a cottontail. Now I'd be able to say with confidence, those little bunnies in the backyard are cottontails!

Reb said...

David, as long as you say it with confidence! ;)

Barbara Martin said...

Reb, when I lived in Edmonton, in January when the temperatures drop down below -25F the snowshoe hares come into the city for the warmth, often followed by wolves. Some people thought they were just over-sized coyotes, but when there was a newspaper article the city folk panicked. Wolves and hares will stay away from people, but humans have an annoying habit of being too curious at times, and then there are consequences.

On my farm my Dobes would chase jackrabbits and be left behind, because the jackrabbits zigged and zagged (which is something Dobes can't do).

Reb said...

Barbara, yes, we have these rabbits year round though. And have even had coyotes in the complex yard hunting them.

gary rith said...

funny, bunnies were abundant in early and mid-summer, but don't see many lately