Grey brown fur with black upper side to tail and white underside of tail (white underside raised when alarmed). Ears about same length as head. Brown eyes (brown hares have noticeably lighter amber eyes). Smaller than hare without the black tips to the ears that the brown hare has.
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Tracks can be seen in mud and sand, but often easiest to identify in snow, as seen in the photo. Rabbit footprints are similar to hare, but smaller in size. Four pads on both fore and hind feet. Hind feet are often an elongated slipper shaped impression. Width 2.5cm, length 3.5cm.
Droppings are often found in grassland habitats, field edges and hedgerows. May be found in dense collection of pellets on prominent feature (e.g. anthill). 10mm in diameter.
Colour: yellowish brown-green.
Smell: Sweet smelling, like a damp digestive biscuit with a hint of mown hay.
Widespread across the British Isles. (Maps are based on expert advice, as of 2007. Some species ranges may have changed in the time since. We are currently in the process of updating them.)
Eats wide range of vegetation, especially grasses. Favours young, succulent leaves and shoots and selects more nutritious species.
Up to 3 years.
Brown Hare (Lepus europaeus)
Amber eyes, very different to rabbit’s brown eyes. Brown hare is larger than the rabbit and has longer limbs. Ears of hare about twice the length of the head, longer than those of rabbit and have distinctive black tips. Hare has orange/brown fur on flanks, compared to grey/brown fur of rabbit.
Mountain Hare (Lepus timidus)
Larger than rabbit with longer limbs. Longer ears than rabbit with black tips.Pale grey body in summer, or white in winter (with black tips of ears still remaining), whereas rabbit has grey/brown fur all year round.