Where Do Rabbits Live?

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Rabbits live all over the world on every continent except Antarctica. They can be found in snowy areas, woodland regions and tropical regions. Find out the differences between rabbits and hares with information from a science teacher in this free video on animal habitats.

Part of the Video Series: Animal Habitats
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Video Transcript

Popular as pets and known for their ability to reproduce rapidly, one of the most important animals in a lot of ecosystems is the rabbit. I'm Janice Creneti. I've been teaching animal environmental science for 20 years and I'm here to answer the question, where to rabbits live. Well, rabbits live all over the world. They're found on every continent except Antarctica. They're found as far north as the Arctic Circle, that's the Arctic hare, they're all white to blend in with the snow, to woodland regions and tropical regions in both the Western and Eastern hemisphere. As I said, rabbits are popular pets but they're also extremely important for the ecosystem. That's part of why they breed as quickly as they do. You see, rabbits are a prey species for foxes, for cougars, even for some snakes and hawks. So, there needs to be a lot of them to spread the food around. Rabbits are able to reproduce very quickly, they can have a litter about every two months and they can produce many babies at a time, sometimes even reaching close to a dozen. There's a lot of different species of rabbits. The ones that you might see in a pet store are actually the ones that have come from other places besides the United States. Their fur tends to be a little bit thicker to handle those colder climates. The rabbits that we're mostly likely to see here in the United States are the Eastern cottontail, if we're in woodland areas, or if we go out to the deserts, we're likely to see jackrabbits. Now, jackrabbits actually fall into a group of animals called hares. You can tell a hare and a rabbit apart because hares tend to have long, skinny ears and long skinny bodies. They're found mostly in deserts and their primary way of escaping predators is to hop, hop, hop. Rabbits, on the other hand, are found in grasslands and woodland areas where there tends to be more cover and a lot of protection, so their bodies are a little bit rounder and their ears a little bit shorter. They can hide and don't have to worry about being so quick. Rabbits, as I said, are an extremely important food source for the ecosystem. They're many, they're varied and they're very popular as pets. I'm Janice Creneti and this is "Where Do Rabbits Live?"


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