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Fun Facts About Rabbits

Eastern Cottontail Rabbit
Credit: Tom Reichner | Shutterstock

A rabbit is a small mammal known for its distinct long ears and short tails. They are found all over the world in meadows, woods, forests, grasslands, deserts and wetlands. There are about 30 species of rabbits in the world.

Rabbits have fur ranging from pure white to black or gray. Their size can range anywhere from 8 inches (20 centimeters) in length and less than a pound in weight to 20 inches (50 cm) and more than 4 pounds (1.8 kilograms). They have short, puffy tails that resemble a round plume of fur. The cottontail rabbit is named after its tail that looks like a ball of cotton.

Rabbits are popular pets because they are social and adapt to humans well. They are herbivores that prefer green, leafy vegetation and feed mainly at night. They typically live in the wild for 10 years.

Other facts about rabbits

hugh heffner, lower marsh keys rabit, hugh's rabbit,
Lower marsh key rabbit, named Sylvilagus palustris hefneri after Hugh Heffner.
Credit: Wikimedia commons user Tomfriedel

Rabbits are popular prey and spent most of their day hidden in vegetation or in underground burrows.

If spotted, they flee from prey in a zigzag. Their powerful hind legs can reach speeds of up to 18 mph (29 kph).

Rabbit ears can be as much as 4 inches (10 cm) in length. They use their ears to detect predators in their habitat.

Rabbits breed at least three to four times a year. Litters of three to seven young are produced. Baby rabbits are called kits and are born blind as well as hairless.

rabbit-fever-tularemia
Tularemia, or rabbit fever, can be spread from rabbits, raccoons, skunks or other small mammals.
Credit: Stock.xchng.

Rabbits and hares may look alike but they are two different species. The biggest difference between the two is what their babies look like at birth. Newborn hares are born with fur and are able to move as well as see shortly after birth.

Rabbits have a near 360-degree vision and can even see behind them. They have just one blind spot right in front of their nose.

Rabbits are popular in mythology and culture. Many people believe carrying a rabbit’s foot will bring good luck.

Other resources:

Humane Society of the United States - Rabbit

IUCN Red List - Oryctolagus cuniculus

National Geographic - Cottontail Rabbit

BBC Nature - Rabbit

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