Red Deer River Naturalists

The Red Deer river Naturalists are a group dedicated to learning about and preserving natural history. They have regular programs with speakers and many field trips.

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Monday, November 16, 2009

Magic of Jack Rabbits Turning White

      From the time I was a little guy on the bald Saskatchewan prairie,one of the more important  times of year was when  the rabbits turned white. For a small kid it was always an amazing transformation.

      At times the white tailed jack rabbit was extremely numerous. Farm activities scared up many rabbits. Jack rabbits find the crops excellent cover which also provides ample fresh food. In the winter tracks and droppings were everywhere. However, my favorite time was the fall and watching the gradual change in color. When they were totally white it seemed that marked the onset of winter.

      With the abundance of white tailed jack rabbits in Red Deer one can again follow the gradual change in color. On my paper route yesterday a rabbit was resting comfortably under a shrub just meters away from the mail box. I have passed this old boy(girl) before and he(she) does not flush from the comfortable scrape even though I am less than a meter away. So yesterday I went home and got the camera to show you that he(she) is about 95% white.

     So one of my joys of the fall season is complete. It can be winter now.

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