Mammalia, Lagomorpha, Leporidae .
Description, Biology, Life Cycle, Damage, Common Names, Images
- Habitat: open land (meadows, pastures, cultivated fields, sandy moors, marshes) close to hedges, thickets and forests.
- Solitary, active all the year round, it moves in leaps and may reach 60 to 70 km/h when running. Crepuscular and nocturnal, it is most active at dusk and dawn. During day time, it remains lying in a small excavation called a "resting place" that it excavates in the ground, in the open, or in long grass. In winter, it sometimes rests under the snow.
- Exclusively vegetarian diet: herbaceous plants, cereals, berries, mushrooms, vegetables. It eats some of its droppings laid during night time and digests them for a 2nd time.
- Before reproduction, frequent ritual fights between the males occur: standing up on their hind legs, they hit each other with their front legs.
- Mating takes place from January to June, the young being born from March to October. Gestation lasts 42 days. The doe hare raises 2 to 4 litters of 1 to 6 leverets a year. It may be impregnated a 2nd time before the production of young and then carries simultaneously young ready to be born and the embryos of the next litter. The young are suckled for 3 weeks and become independant after 1 month.
- Sexual maturity: 1 year. Longevity: up to 12 years.
When the population density is high, the hare may cause damage in young forest plantations and among crops: clover, lucerne, red beet (*) , sowing of cereals, maize, pea, young cabbage plants, vine (nipping off of the buds), vegetable crops, sunflower (*) .
HYPPZ on line : Species (scientific name), Pests (common names), Glossary, Crops.