Rabbit

Oryctolagus cuniculus

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RANGE: It is thought that rabbits have spread through Europe from Spain. Absent though from much of Scandinavia. They have been introduced to other continents. In Australia rabbits have destroyed vast areas of grassland.

HABITAT: Grassland, scrub, open woodland sand dunes.

SIZE: Up to 40cms.

DIET: Grass but can destroy cereal crops and young trees.

CONSERVATION STATUS: Can be very abundant.

NOTES: Live in extensive burrows. Colour variable from brown to sandy. Can have litters at 5 weekly intervals. Predators include foxes and birds of prey. Very successful survivors despite predation and persecution in various forms. Rabbits give birth to young blind, without fur below ground. Hares are members of the same animal family but give birth above ground, with sighted and well-furred babies.

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