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Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.)
Mammalia, Lagomorpha, Leporidae .


Description, Biology, Life Cycle, Damage, Common Names, Images

- Adult: weight: 0.7 to 2 kg, length: 38 to 53 cm of which 4 to 8 cm for the tail. Roundish body, quite long ears (6 to 7 cm), long hind legs, very short bushy tail. Grey fur with yellow reflections on the back, ginger spot on the nape of the neck, whitish belly and inner side of the legs, wholly grey ears, brown on top of tail, white underneath (*) .
- The young rabbits are born naked and blind. They open their eyes when 10 days old.

- Habitat: dry and sandy areas; coastal zones, uncultivated land, sandy moors, fallow land; it avoids wooded moutains.
- Exclusively vegetarian diet: Graminaceae, cultivated crops, young shoots: it eats the bark of certain trees in winter. It eats some of its droppings rich in vitamin B1 to digest them for a 2nd time.
- Active all the year round, the rabbit lives in family groups comprising up to 25 individuals. Crepuscular, nocturnal and partly diurnal activity. The group digs out burrows with numerous entrances linked by tracks (the warren) in a slope, banks or hillsides. In case of danger, it can run up to 38 km/h advancing in small leaps and zigzagging.
- The female produces its young in a hole called "nursery burrow", the entrance of which is blocked by earth and in which it prepares a nest of dry herbage and hairs.

[R]Life Cycle
- The female produces 3 to 5 litters of 3 to 6 young rabbits between February and August. Period of gestation, from 28 to 30 days. the young are suckled for 3 weeks and become independant when 1 month old.
- Sexual maturity at about 3-4 months. Longevity: up to 10 years.

Rabbits may cause considerable damage, particularly in winter, among young tree plantations (*) (forest species, fruit trees) and among crops: sowings of cereals, maize (*) , pea, young cabbage plants, vine (nipping off of the buds), vegetable crops, red beet (*) .

[R]Common Names
DE: Wildkaninchen, Kaninchen ES: Conejo comun FR: Lapin de garenne IT: Coniglio selvatico PT: Coelho Bravo GB: Rabbit

[R] Images

  1. Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.) (INRA)
    Damage to harvested beet
  2. Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.) (INRA)
    Barked trunk of fruit tree
  3. Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.) (Pépin M. / INRA)
    Damage to maize
  4. Oryctolagus cuniculus (L.) (Barbier L. / ONC)

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HYPPZ on line : Species (scientific name), Pests (common names), Glossary, Crops.

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