The Topic:
Rabbits and Hares

This 42eXplore project from eduScapes includes a companion webpage called Types of Rabbits & Hares. There you will find and index list of links to over a hundred websites providing lots more information, photographs, and a few video clips of specific types of rabbits and hares. Don't miss it!
Easier - Rabbits are furry-coated and short-tailed mammals. They have long ears and long back legs for running and jumping. Rabbits are herbivores with long front teeth for gnawing. Some make burrows or tunnels in the ground. Rabbits are smaller and have shorter ears than their hare relatives. A hare (pronounced hair) also has long, strong back legs. Unlike rabbits, their young are born with their eyes open and they live above ground.
Harder - Rabbits and hares are common names, often applied interchangeably, for small, furry mammals with long ears and legs, and short tails. In zoological classification, rabbits are distinguished by the helplessness of their offspring. Young rabbits are born naked with their eyes closed. With the exception of North America's cottontail, rabbits live in underground burrow colonies. The cottontail builds its simple nest on the surface, usually in grass or brush, and rarely lives in social groups. Hares are generally larger and have longer ears with characteristic black markings. The skulls of rabbits and hares are also different.
Both rabbits and hares are distributed throughout the world and possess some common traits. They are often mistaken for each other. Various species and subspecies of rabbits and hares are found in brushy woods, plains and grasslands, mountains, deserts, around rivers and wetlands, and even in the Arctic tundra and snow. Both breed prolifically, bearing four to eight litters each year. A litter generally has three to eight young. They have a gestation period of about a month, are sexually mature in about six months, and live in the wild for about six years. Domestic rabbits may live to be over ten years old. Although rabbits and hares are valued as game by hunters both for their food and fur, they are also are pests to farmers and gardeners. They can destroy crops and trees.
Bunny Readers (Grade 2) from S. Silverman's
This website focuses on literature and rabbits and involves students from several schools.
Other Classroom Sites:
2) Bunny Readers from M. Tonnessen (Grade 1)
3) Rabbits: Peter and Those Living Wild (Grade 2) by J.M. Christiansen
House Rabbit Society
This is a volunteer, nonprofit organization that rescues rabbits and educates the public on rabbit care and behavior.
Related Websites for Domestic Rabbits:
2) Black Rabbit
3) Hopperhome
4) Hoppin' Rabbit Page
5) Massachusetts House Rabbit Society
6) My Bunnies
7) Rabbit Care from Johnsons' Veterinary Products Ltd.
8) Rabbit Care
9) Rabbit Web
10) Rabbits - A 'Hare' Raising Experience? from New Agriculturist
11) UK Rabbit WWW Page
Rabbit from World Book Online
This site is a good starting point for learning about rabbits and hares.
Related Websites:
2) Lagomorphs from Enchanted Learning
3) Mammals: Rabbit
4) Rabbit from The Habitat Advocates
5) Rabbits from Enchanted Learning
Rabbits and Hares from Aliens Explore Earth
What's the difference between a rabbit and a hare?
Related Websites:
2) Cottontail or Domestic Rabbit? from Wildlife Rescue League
3) Hares and Rabbits
4) Hares from Alaska Department of Fish and Game
5) Minnesota Is Hopping With Hares and Rabbits from Minnesota Department of Natural
6) Rabbits from Mammals of Ontario
7) Rabbits & Hares
8) Rabbits & Hares
Visit and explore several of the websites. Afterwards, complete one or more of these activities.
Email A Rabbit Postcard. Follow the instructions found at Send and Pick Up Multimedia Bunny Postcards from the Massachusetts House Rabbit Society.
Read Some Rabbit Jokes. You can find some online at Rabbit Jokes. Can you think of any other rabbit jokes. Maybe you could write your own.
Color A Rabbit. You can print out and have fun with the pictures found at K.G. Rabbit and Rabbit. You also might draw and/or paint your own original rabbit artwork,
Complete A Rabbit WebQuest. Follow or adapt the procedures found at the following webQuest sites:
1) Catch the Rabbit (Grade 4) by M. Gianola & C. Talleri
2) Peter Rabbit & The Tortoise and the Hare by M. Corrado
Map Out A Garden for Rabbit Hill. First read the book, Rabbit Hill. Then follow the directions found at Rabbit Hill Garden.
Investigate Caring for Rabbits. In addition to the great resources found at many of the already listed websites (Above), you may also want to visit these specific locations:
1) Care of Your Rabbit
2) General Care of Your Rabbit
3) How to Care for Your Rabbits from The Childrens Stomping Ground
4) Index of Rabbit Care Resources from House Rabbit Society
5) Rabbit Care Guide
After you have completed the research on rabbit care, create a booklet that summarizes the most important aspects of caring for a rabbit.
Create An Interview With The Easter Bunny! With the possible exception of the Tooth Fairy or maybe Santa Claus, there is not a busier mammal than the Easter Bunny. Once a year, the Easter Bunny hops into hundreds of millions of homes around the world dropping off chocolates, candy, and eggs as part of the celebration of Easter. Write up a fictitious interview of the Easter Bunny. Put it into the form of a script with first a question followed by the Easter Bunnies response. You could create a radio show and record the interview.
Speculate On Rabbit Communication. Visit the the slightly-bent site on (1) Rabbit Language or “Are You Going to Eat That?” or these more serious resources; (2) Bunny Behavior, (3) Language of Lagomorphs, and (4) Rabbit Behavior Resources from House Rabbit Society. Then create your own guide to rabbit communication. You can approach this topic seriously or be wildly outrageous and creative. Have some fun.
Websites By Kids For Kids
Somewhere today a lop-eared rabbit is twitching its nose in the bright sunlight of a meadow.
More Websites
American Rabbit Breeders Association, Inc.
Here you can find photos and information on many domestic rabbit breeds, pet care tips, show listings, and more.
Bobby & Billy the Bunny Rabbits
Meet some photogenic house rabbits.
Controlling Rabbits in the Landscape by S.R. Metzger & J. Weisberg from Ohio State University Extension
The common rabbit or eastern cottontail (Sylvilagus floridanus), can do considerable damage to flowers, vegetables, trees and shrubs any time of the year in places ranging from suburban yards to rural fields and tree plantations. Control is often necessary to reduce damage, but complete extermination is not necessary, desirable, or even possible.
Related Website:
2) Field Sports by J. Woodward
Cottontail Rabbit from Clemson University Extension
This pamphlet details the rabbit as a game animal, includes techniques for hunting, trapping, and preparing wild rabbits.
Related Websites:
2) Is Rabbit Hunting Becoming a Lost Sport? by J. Wilkinson from ESPN Outdoors
3) Rabbit Hunting Online
4) Rabbit Hunting: Tips to Increase Success by M. Walker
5) Rabbit Snaring from Alaska Native Knowledge Network
Dancing Hare from World Lore
European myths about rabbit and hare are well-known to most people. Does any of this sound familiar?
Easter Bunny
Learn about Easter bunnies becoming a favorite Easter symbol.
Environmental Damage by Wild Rabbits: Eating the Heart out of the Country
Wild European Rabbits are viewed as animal pests in Australia and New Zealand. Damage by wild rabbits in Australia, including the annual cost of control and production losses, has been estimated at $600 million.
Related Information:
2) Controlling Rabbit Damage in Tree Plantings from Kansas Forest Service
3) Control of Rabbits and Hares
4) Cottontail Rabbit Damage Control from Michigan State University Extension
5) Plague on the Pest – Rabbit Calicivirus Disease and Biological Control
6) Rabbits from Wisconsin's School Integrated Pest Management Manual
Rabbit Fibromatosis (Shope fibromas) from Michigan Department of Natural Resources,1607,7-153-10370_12150_12220-27256--,00.html
This disease has been reported in rabbits from a number of states, but is usually found on cottontail rabbits living east of the Mississippi River.
More Information on Rabbit Diseases:
2) Acute Gastrointestinal Disturbances in Rabbits
3) Cysticercosis from Michigan Department of Natural Resources,1607,7-153-10370_12150_12220-26630--CI,00.html
4) Myxomatosis
5) Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease (a.k.a. Rabbit Calicivirus Disease)
6) Sarcocystis from Michigan Department of Natural Resources,1607,7-153-10370_12150_12220-27272--CI,00.html
Rabbit in Different Languages
How is rabbit written in another language?
World of Woo and Koo
Follow the real life tales of Woo and Koo, two pet bunnies. Site includes movies, stories, tips for raising rabbits, and Japanese and Spanish versions.
Rabbit Literature
Bedtime Stories For Children by T.W. Burgess
Thornton W. Burgess wrote over 170 books and 15,000 stories throughout his life. His characters, such as: Peter Rabbit, Joe Otter, Hooty the Owl, Jerry Muskrat, and Bobby Raccoon are famous worldwide.
Blue Father, Purple Mother by R. Bakish
Read the story of divorcing rabbits and how young Bunny deals with it.
Cabbit by C. Andrews
This is the story of a real life rabbit that thinks he is a cat and his adopted mother cat that loves him.
Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes by D.B. Heyward
Here you can read an online tale of Easter bunnies.
Another Online Bunny Story:
2) Adventurous Bunny and Easter Island
Lion and the Hare from Afro-America Myths and Fables
In this story from Ethiopia, Lion tries to match wits with clever little Rabbit.
Another Folktale from Afro-America Myths and Fables:
2) Rabbit, the Elephant, and the Whale
Folktale from Central Africa:
3) Rabbit Grows a Crop of Money
Rabbit Stories
Read traditional rabbit stories from the Maya culture.
Other Myan Folktales:
2) Rabbit and The Coyote
3) Rabbit Throws Out His Sandal
Real Watership Down from Richard Adams' Book
Richard Adams set the book 'Watership Down' in the region he grew up in. This area is a real place and is south of Newbury. Here are pictures and information about the area.
Related Site:
2) Tribute to Watership Down
3) Watership Down
Robert Lawson
Read the biography of Robert Lawson, author of 'Rabbit Hill.'
Related Website:
2) Robert Lawson
Tale of Peter Rabbit from Electronic Text Center, University of Virginia Library . . .
Read the 1904 original version online, complete with illustrations!
Other Related Websites:
2) Beatrix Potter
3) Beatrix Potter by D. Straw from Literary Traveler®
4) (Helen) Beatrix Potter (1866-1943)
5) Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter from Kid's Corner of Wired for Books
6) World of Peter Rabbit from Frederick Warne & Co Limited
Taylor Rabbit & The Seeds of Success from Painted Horse
This site has the rough draft of the second book in the Taylor Rabbit Series complete with original sketches as well as corrections made by author Bill Sullivan.
Tortoise and the Hare by R.J. Kamp
Read a story about a hare named Elbert who is obsessed with being number 1 in everything he does.
Velveteen Rabbit, The or How Toys Become Real by Margery Williams
Here you can read the classic tale of The Velveteen Rabbit © 1922.
Related Websites:
2) Velveteen Rabbit (Retold and illustrated by a first grade class)
3) Velveteen Rabbit or How Toys Become Real by Margery Williams
4) Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams
Why Rabbit Has A Short Tail retold by B. Warren
Read a Cherokee story about boasting and the potential consequences associated with the practice.
Related Native American Folktales:
2) Ableegumooch, the Lazy Rabbit
3) How Rabbit Brought Fire to the People
4) How Rabbit Fooled Alligator
5) How Rabbit Fooled Wolf
6) How the Rabbit Lost His Tail
7) Rabbit and Fox
8) Rabbit and Otter, The Bungling Host
9) Rabbit and The Coyote
10) Rabbit and the Moon Man
11) Rabbit Shoots the Sun
Websites For Teachers
Bunny Business (Grade K) by W. Davis, K. Dutton, & J. Shivley
This unit plan uses literature to teach the children about the characteristics of bunny and ways to care for them.
Related Lesson:
2) What Do You Know About Rabbits (Grades K-5)
Goldilocks and the Three Hares (Grades 1-4) by H. Petach from TeacherVision
Besides the Classroom Discovery Pages included, ideas for further exploration in language, science, math, and geography skills are suggested here.
Hare and the Water: A Tanzanian Folktale (Grades 3-5)
Students explore the literary elements of a Tanzanian folktale about animals collaborating to dig a well. They also create original conclusions to the tale and cooperatively illustrate the folktale using oil pastels.
Mayan Folktale
Students read and compare the Mayan folktale "Rabbit and the The Crab" and the American folktale "The Tortoise and the Hare."
Rabbits (Preschool: ages 2-6) from First-School
This site houses a collection of preschool activities.
Related Site from First-School:
2) Hare Theme
Reading Room from House Rabbit Society
This comprehensive rabbit information site provides a list of their favorite children's and other fiction books.
crop damage
thick, soft fur
bunny hop
green plants
domestic rabbit
'rabbit tobacco'
rabbit calicivirus disease (RCD)
zigzag pattern
habitat fragmentation
chisel-shaped front teeth
rabbit hemorrhagic disease (RHD)
'rabbit hole'
habitat loss
rabbit brush
year of the rabbit
Created by Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, 3/03.