Rabbits -- School-age

Rabbits

Rabbit

Things to Know

The animal family Leporidae consistes primarily of rabbits and hares. Rabbits are small mammals known for their long ears, which can measure more than 2 inches (6 cm) long, powerful hind legs, and short tail.

Ouch!

Do not pick a rabbit up by its ears. That hurts!

Rabbits are found on every continent except Antarctica. They are found all over the world, although they are not native to some areas people introduced them to those areas. Rabbits live in parks, gardens, meadows, woods, forests, grasslands, deserts and wetlands.

Pet Rabbits in Alaska

There are about 28 species (or types) of rabbits and about 30 species of hares. One species domestic rabbit, is the one we normally keep as a pets. Most domestic pet rabbits are European rabbits.The domestic rabbit has been breed into many different types of rabbits.

An American Fuzzy Lop Rabbit
An American Fuzzy Lop

Rabbits range in color from white, sandy, fawn, gray, to black. Their size varies from 8 inches (20 cm) to 20 inches (50 cm) in length. The largest is the Flemish Giant and the smallest type is the American Fuzzy Lop.

Flemish Giant Rabbit
A Flemish Giant rabbit napping next to a Sheltie dog.

Cottontail Rabbit

They have short tails that resemble a round fluffy ball. The cottontail rabbit is named Cottontail Rabbitafter its short fluffy white tail that looks like a big cottonball. Itl is a medium-sized rabbit of 14 to 18 inches (36-48 cm) in length.

Cottontail Rabbit
Cottontail Rabbit

The cottontail will "freeze", sit very still when another animal approaches. By sitting still the cottontail tries to avoid being noticed. If freezing doesn't work and the animal or person continues toward the rabbit it will hop away in a zig-zag pattern. The cottontail is a good swimmer and can escape predators by running into lakes and streams. It nests above ground rather than digging burrows. Surface nest are called forms.

Story

Native American Story-Why Rabbit Has A Short Tail

Family

Most rabbits dig underground burrows, or holes, for shelter. A group of burrows is known as a warren. The European rabbit constructs the most extensive burrow systems.

Rabbits live in groups called herds. A male rabbit is called a buck. A female rabbit is called a doe. A baby rabbit is called a kit, it is also refered to as a bunny. Rabbits reproduce often. A rabbit usually has 2 to 3 litters a year, each litter has 4 to 5 bunnies. More than half the world's population of rabbits live in North America. Rabbits in the wild live around 10 years.

Rabbit Herd
Rabbits

Rabbits

Rabbits are crepuscular, they are most active at dawn and dusk; they sleep more during the day and at night. Rabbits are herbivores (plant-eaters). They consume plant material in large quantities. Rabbits eat a variety of vegetables, fruits, clovers, grass, hay, leaves, bark, flowers, and twigs.

Rabbit

Rabbits eyes have a field of vison of about 190 degrees, which means they can see very well in front, above, and behind. Thier eyes are placed on the side (lateral) of their heads, this allows rabbits to see a wider range to look for predators.

Rabbits & Hares

Hare
Hare

Activities

Hares are slightly different than rabbits. Rabbits are born with no fur and theiharer eyes closed. Hares are born with fur and with their eyes open. Hares are usually bigger with longer ears and a longer hind leg. A hare less than one year old is called a leveret.

Some names of rabbits and hares are misapplied. Jackrabbits of North America are actually hares and the Belgium hare is in fact a rabbit. All hares are wild animals, only some species of rabbits have been domesticated.

Things to Do

Story

Duck! Rabbit!
by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Make

Cute Bunnies
Create by using strips of papers.

Duck Rabbit Puppet
Duck/Rabbit Puppet

Print a duck/rabbit "reversible" puppet with poems.

Stand Up Bunny
Stand Up Bunny

Print the template.


Peter Rabbit Stand Up
Print the template.


Paper Bunny Chain
Includes a bunny template to trace and step-by-step directions with pictures.

Dance

Do the Bunny Hop

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