By Alex White
Hares (Brown Hare – Lepus europaeus) are one of my favourite animals, I love the gangly awkwardness about them.
Around where I live we have good years and bad years for hares. I’m not sure why, it could just be that they only go in certain fields when there are certain crops and therefore I see them more often in particular years.
- A male hare is called a Jack and a female a Jill
- They have long black-tipped ears, powerful hind legs and a black tip to their tail
- Hares grow to about 50 – 60 cms
- Hares have a life span of 3 to 4 years
- They have a top speed of 56 kilometers per hour making them the UK’s fastest land mammal.
- They don’t live in burrows like rabbits but lie in a small dip in the ground called a form.
- Hares can have 3 to 4 litters a year with 2 to 4 young in each
- The young are called leverets and are born with fur and their eyes open.
- Hares feature a lot in mythology and the ‘Easter bunny’ was most likely a hare after Eostre, the Anglo-Saxon goddess of spring, whose compnion was a hare
- The iconic image of boxing hares is a female hare telling a male hare she isn’t interested or ready to mate.