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Hare Today, Gone…

Hare today at Brandon

Saw this brown hare (Lepus europaeus) briefly in open farmland between Brandon and Ingram.

Hares are fairly easy to identify (is it a rabbit or is it a hare?) by their long, black-tipped ears and relatively large size – they grow from 50-70cm long. It has a golden-brown coat and a white tail.

And, if you see one running, they will leave rabbits in their wake with their longer legs. When panicked or evading predators a brown hare can reach speeds approaching 45mph for short periods (Note 1). Impressive!

Photo of brown hare sitting in open grassland
Hare today (brown hare resting in open farmland)
Photo of brown hare running across grassland seen from behind

A bit of info

Unlike rabbits, brown hares do not dig burrows, but rest in shallow depressions called forms. They are mainly active at night, feeding on grasses, herbs and crops. They breed from January to August, producing several litters of young called leverets. It’s an introduced species in Britain, thought to have been brought by the Romans around 2,000 years ago . It is now considered naturalised and is a priority species for conservation. One of its most famous behaviours is the spring boxing, when females fend off unwanted males or test their strength.


The Wildlife Trusts (undated) ‘Brown Hare’ [WWW] Accessed 14 May 2023.

Related post

Photo of a hare running across a footbridge
I’ll cross that bridge!
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