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Hares and jackrabbits are leporids belonging to the genus Lepus. Hares are classified into the same family as rabbits. They are similar in size and form to rabbits and eat the same diet. They are generally herbivorous and long-eared, they are fast runners, and they typically live solitarily or in pairs. Hare
Hare
species are native to Africa, Eurasia, North America, and the Japanese archipelago. Five leporid species with "hare" in their common names are not considered true hares: the hispid hare (Caprolagus hispidus), and four species known as red rock hares (comprising Pronolagus). Meanwhile, jackrabbits are hares rather than rabbits. A hare less than one year old is called a leveret. The collective noun for a group of hares is a "drove".

Contents

1 Biology

1.1 Differences from rabbits 1.2 Classification

2 As food 3 Folklore and mythology

3.1 Famous hares in fiction 3.2 Famous hares in art 3.3 Three hares

4 Place names 5 See also 6 References 7 Further reading 8 External links

Biology[edit] Hares are swift animals: The European hare
European hare
(Lepus europaeus) can run up to 56 km/h (35 mph).[1][2] The five species of jackrabbits found in central and western North America
North America
are able to run at 64 km/h (40 mph), and can leap up to 3 m (10 ft) at a time.[3] Normally a shy animal, the European brown hare changes its behavior in spring, when hares can be seen in daytime chasing one another; this appears to be competition between males to attain dominance (and hence more access to breeding females). During this spring frenzy, hares can be seen "boxing", one hare striking another with its paws (probably the origin of the term "mad as a March hare"). For a long time, this had been thought to be only intermale competition, but closer observation has revealed it can also be a female hitting a male to prevent copulation.[4][5] Differences from rabbits[edit] Main article: Rabbit

Wild hare doe in city garden

Hares do not bear their young below ground in a burrow as do other leporids, but rather in a shallow depression or flattened nest of grass called a form. Young hares are adapted to the lack of physical protection, relative to that afforded by a burrow, by being born fully furred and with eyes open. They are hence precocial, and are able to fend for themselves soon after birth. By contrast, the related rabbits and cottontail rabbits are altricial, having young that are born blind and hairless.[6] All rabbits (except the cottontail rabbits) live underground in burrows or warrens, while hares (and cottontail rabbits) live in simple nests above the ground, and usually do not live in groups. Hares are generally larger than rabbits, with longer ears, and have black markings on their fur. Hares have not been domesticated, while rabbits are raised for food and kept as house pets. The domestic pet known as the "Belgian Hare" is a rabbit that has been selectively bred to resemble a hare.[7] Hares have jointed, or kinetic, skulls, unique among mammals. They have 48 chromosomes while rabbits have 44. Classification[edit] The 32 species listed are:

Hare

Brooklyn Museum - California Hare
Hare
- John J. Audubon

Cape hare
Cape hare
Lepus capensis

European hare
European hare
(above) and mountain hare

Genus
Genus
Lepus[8]

Subgenus Macrotolagus

Antelope jackrabbit, Lepus alleni

Subgenus Poecilolagus

Snowshoe hare, Lepus americanus

Subgenus Lepus

Arctic hare, Lepus arcticus Alaskan hare, Lepus othus Mountain hare, Lepus timidus

Subgenus Proeulagus

Black-tailed jackrabbit, Lepus californicus White-sided jackrabbit, Lepus callotis Cape hare, Lepus capensis Tehuantepec jackrabbit, Lepus flavigularis Black jackrabbit, Lepus insularis Scrub hare, Lepus saxatilis Desert hare, Lepus tibetanus Tolai hare, Lepus tolai

Subgenus Eulagos

Broom hare, Lepus castroviejoi Yunnan hare, Lepus comus Korean hare, Lepus coreanus Corsican hare, Lepus corsicanus European hare, Lepus europaeus Granada hare, Lepus granatensis Manchurian hare, Lepus mandschuricus Woolly hare, Lepus oiostolus Ethiopian highland hare, Lepus starcki White-tailed jackrabbit, Lepus townsendii

Subgenus Sabanalagus

Ethiopian hare, Lepus fagani African savanna hare, Lepus microtis

Subgenus Indolagus

Hainan hare, Lepus hainanus Indian hare, Lepus nigricollis Burmese hare, Lepus peguensis

Subgenus Sinolagus

Chinese hare, Lepus sinensis

Subgenus Tarimolagus

Yarkand hare, Lepus yarkandensis

Incertae sedis

Japanese hare, Lepus brachyurus Abyssinian hare, Lepus habessinicus

As food[edit]

Young Hare, a watercolour, 1502, by Albrecht Dürer

Hares and rabbits are plentiful in many areas, adapt to a wide variety of conditions, and reproduce quickly, so hunting is often less regulated than for other varieties of game. In rural areas of North America and particularly in pioneer times,[9] they were a common source of meat. Because of their extremely low fat content, they are a poor choice as a survival food.[10] Hares can be prepared in the same manner as rabbits — commonly roasted or taken apart for breading and frying. Hasenpfeffer (also spelled Hasenfeffer) is a traditional German stew made from marinated rabbit or hare. Pfeffer is not only the name of a spice, but also of a dish where the animal's blood is used as a thickening agent for the sauce. Wine or vinegar is also a prominent ingredient, to lend a sourness to the recipe. Lagos Stifado (Λαγός στιφάδο) — hare stew with pearl onions, vinegar, red wine and cinnamon — is a much-prized dish enjoyed in Greece and Cyprus and communities in the diaspora, particularly in Australia where the hare is hunted as a feral pest. Jugged hare, known as civet de lièvre in France, is a whole hare, cut into pieces, marinated, and cooked with red wine and juniper berries in a tall jug that stands in a pan of water. It traditionally is served with the hare's blood (or the blood is added right at the very end of the cooking process) and port wine.[11][12][13][14] Jugged hare is described in the influential 18th-century cookbook, The Art of Cookery by Hannah Glasse, with a recipe titled, "A Jugged Hare", that begins, "Cut it into little pieces, lard them here and there ..." The recipe goes on to describe cooking the pieces of hare in water in a jug set within a bath of boiling water to cook for three hours.[15] Beginning in the 19th century, Glasse has been widely credited with having started the recipe with the words "First, catch your hare," as in this citation.[12] This attribution is apocryphal. Having a freshly caught (or shot) hare enables one to obtain its blood. A freshly killed hare is prepared for jugging by removing its entrails and then hanging it in a larder by its hind legs, which causes the blood to accumulate in the chest cavity. One method of preserving the blood after draining it from the hare (since the hare is usually hung for a week or more) is to mix it with red wine vinegar to prevent coagulation, and then to store it in a freezer.[16][17] Many other British cookbooks from before the middle of the 20th century have recipes for jugged hare. Merle and Reitch[18] have this to say about jugged hare, for example:

The best part of the hare, when roasted, is the loin and the thick part of the hind leg; the other parts are only fit for stewing, hashing, or jugging. It is usual to roast a hare first, and to stew or jug the portion which is not eaten the first day. [...] To Jug A Hare. This mode of cooking a hare is very desirable when there is any doubt as to its age, as an old hare, which would be otherwise uneatable, may be made into an agreeable dish. [...]

In 2006, a survey of 2021 people for the UKTV Food television channel found only 1.6% of the people under 25 recognized jugged hare by name. Seven of 10 stated they would refuse to eat jugged hare if it were served at the house of a friend or a relative.[19] The hare (and in recent times, the rabbit) is a staple of Maltese cuisine. The dish was presented to the island's Grandmasters of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, as well as Renaissance Inquisitors resident on the island, several of whom went on to become pope. According to Jewish tradition, the hare is among mammals deemed not kosher, and therefore not eaten by observant Jews. According to Islamic dietary laws, Muslims deem coney meat (rabbit, pika, hyrax) halal, and in Egypt, hare and rabbit are popular meats for mulukhiyah (jute leaf soup), especially in Cairo.[20] The Shia, though, have difference in opinion.[citation needed] In England, a now rarely served dish is potted hare. The hare meat is cooked, then covered in at least one inch (preferably more) of butter. The butter is a preservative (excludes air); the dish can be stored for up to several months. It is served cold, often on bread or as an appetizer. Folklore and mythology[edit] The hare in African folk tales is a trickster; some of the stories about the hare were retold among African slaves in America, and are the basis of the Br'er Rabbit
Rabbit
stories. The hare appears in English folklore in the saying "as mad as a March hare" and in the legend of the White Hare
Hare
that alternatively tells of a witch who takes the form of a white hare and goes out looking for prey at night or of the spirit of a broken-hearted maiden who cannot rest and who haunts her unfaithful lover.[21][22] Many cultures, including the Chinese, Japanese, and Mexican, see a hare in the pattern of dark patches in the moon (see Moon
Moon
rabbit). The constellation Lepus is also taken to represent a hare. The hare was once regarded as an animal sacred to Aphrodite and Eros because of its high libido. Live hares were often presented as a gift of love.[23] Now the hare is commonly associated with the Anglo-Saxon goddess Ēostre, and therefore pagan symbols like the Easter Bunny have been appropriated into the Christian
Christian
tradition. However, no primary sources support this belief, which seems to be a modern invention.[24] In European tradition, the hare symbolises the two qualities of swiftness[25] and timidity.[26] The latter once gave the European hare the Linnaean name Lepus timidus[27] that is now limited to the Mountain hare. Several ancient fables depict the Hare
Hare
in flight; in one concerning The Hares and the Frogs they even decide to commit mass suicide until they come across a creature so timid that it is even frightened of them. Conversely, in The Tortoise and the Hare, the best-known among Aesop's Fables, the hare loses a race through being too confident in its swiftness. In Irish folklore, the hare is often associated with Sidh (Fairy) or other pagan elements. In these stories, characters who harm hares often suffer dreadful consequences. In June 2014, the Pushkin House
Pushkin House
(the Institute of Russian Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences) hosted the international conference, "The Philosophy of the Hare: Unexpected perspectives in the research in the humanities".[28] The conference organizers came up with the idea as a retort to an earlier claim by Russia's Minister of Culture Vladimir Medinsky
Vladimir Medinsky
that humanities scholars were wasting government money conducting research on incomprehensible topics with names such as the one they chose. Famous hares in fiction[edit] Main article: List of fictional rabbits and hares Famous hares in art[edit] Main article: Rabbits and hares in art Three hares[edit] Main article: Three hares

Dreihasenfenster (Window of Three Hares) in Paderborn Cathedral

A study in 2004 followed the history and migration of a symbolic image of three hares with conjoined ears. In this image, three hares are seen chasing each other in a circle with their heads near its centre. While each of the animals appears to have two ears, only three ears are depicted. The ears form a triangle at the centre of the circle and each is shared by two of the hares. The image has been traced from Christian
Christian
churches in the English county of Devon
Devon
right back along the Silk Road
Silk Road
to China, via western and eastern Europe and the Middle East. Before its appearance in China, it was possibly first depicted in the Middle East before being reimported centuries later. Its use is associated with Christian, Jewish, Islamic and Buddhist sites stretching back to about 600 CE.[29] Place names[edit] The hare has given rise to local place names, as they can often be observed in favoured localities. An example in Scotland is 'Murchland', 'murchen' being a Scots word for a hare.[30] See also[edit]

Rabbits and hares portal

Lagomorpha Rabbits and hares in art Three hares

References[edit]

^ McKay, George; McGhee, Karen (10 October 2006). National Geographic Encyclopedia of Animals. National Geographic Books. p. 68. ISBN 9780792259367.  ^ Vu, Alan. "Lepus europaeus: European hare". Animal
Animal
Diversity Web. University of Michigan Museum of Zoology. Retrieved 9 January 2013.  ^ "Jackrabbits, Jackrabbit Pictures, Jackrabbit Facts - National Geographic". Animals.nationalgeographic.com. Retrieved 2013-01-12.  ^ Holly, A.J.F. & Greenwood, P.J. (1984). "The myth of the mad March hare". Nature. 309: 549–550.  ^ Flux, J.E.C. (1987). "Myths and mad March hares". Nature. 325: 737. doi:10.1038/325737a0.  ^ Langley, Liz (19 December 2014). "What's the Difference Between Rabbits and Hares?". National Geographic.  ^ Pet Planet - Small Breed Profile - Belgian Hare ^ Hoffman, R.S.; Smith, A.T. (2005). "Order Lagomorpha". In Wilson, D.E.; Reeder, D.M. Mammal
Mammal
Species
Species
of the World: A Taxonomic and Geographic Reference (3rd ed.). Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 195–205. ISBN 978-0-8018-8221-0. OCLC 62265494.  ^ Brock (2009-05-18). "Mormon Pioneer Foodways: Rabbit, anyone?". Pioneerfoodie.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2010-03-20.  ^ Gary L. Benton. "Vitamins, Minerals, and Survival". Preparedness and Self-Reliance. Retrieved 2017-10-30.  ^ Tom Jaine. "A Glossery of Cookery and other Terms". The History of English Cookery. Prospect Books.  ^ a b "Chips are down for Britain's old culinary classics". The Guardian. 2006-07-25. p. 6.  ^ "Jugged". The Great British Kitchen. The British Food Trust.  ^ "Recipes: Game: Jugged Hare". The Great British Kitchen. The British Food Trust.  ^ Glasse, Hannah. The Art of Cookery, Made Plain and Easy. London, 1747. page 50 ^ Bill Deans. "Hares, Brown, Blue or White". Archived from the original on 2007-09-30.  ^ John Seymour & Sally Seymour (September–October 1976). "Farming for Self-Sufficiency Independence on a 5-acre (20,000 m2) Farm". Mother Earth News (41). Archived from the original on 2006-09-01.  ^ Gibbons Merle & John Reitch (1842). The domestic dictionary and housekeeper's manual. London: William Strange. p. 113.  ^ "Hannah Glasse's Jugged Hare". Retrieved 2017-10-30.  ^ " Rabbit
Rabbit
Molokhia". SBS Food.  ^ "The White Hare". Folk-this.tripod.com. 1969-05-13. Retrieved 2013-01-12.  ^ "Legends of Britain: The White Hare". Britannia.com. Retrieved 2013-01-12.  ^ John Layard, The Lady of the Hare, "The Hare
Hare
in Classical Antiquity", pp.208 - 21 ^ Hunt-Anschütz, A. Æ. (2006). "Eostre and Easter Customs". Association of Polytheist Traditions.  ^ As fast as a hare ^ Ebenezer Cobham Brewer, Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, Cambridge University 2014, p.32 ^ The Popular Encyclopaedia 3.2., Glasgow 1836, p.634 ^ "Философия зайца": неожиданные перспективы гуманитарных исследований" ("The Philosophy of the Hare: Unexpected perspectives in the research in the humanities") ^ Chris Chapman (2004). "The three hares project". Retrieved 2008-11-11.  ^ Warrack, Alexander, ed. (1984). Chambers Scots dictionary. Edinburgh: W. & R. Chambers. ISBN 9780550118011. 

Further reading[edit]

Windling, Terri. The Symbolism of Rabbits and Hares. William George Black, F.S.A.Scot. "The Hare
Hare
in Folk-lore" The Folk-Lore Journal. Volume 1, 1883.

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lepus.

Look up hare in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

BBC Nature section about hares Picture series of an aged hare whose fur has turned gray

v t e

Extant Lagomorpha
Lagomorpha
species

Kingdom Animalia Phylum Chordata Class Mammalia Infraclass Eutheria Superorder Euarchontoglires

Family Ochotonidae (Pikas)

Ochotona

Subgenus Pika: Alpine pika
Alpine pika
(O. alpina) Helan Shan pika (O. argentata) Collared pika
Collared pika
(O. collaris) Hoffmann's pika
Hoffmann's pika
(O. hoffmanni) Northern pika
Northern pika
(O. hyperborea) Pallas's pika
Pallas's pika
(O. pallasi) American pika
American pika
(O. princeps) Turuchan pika
Turuchan pika
(O. turuchanensis)

Subgenus Ochotona: Gansu pika
Gansu pika
(O. cansus) Plateau pika
Plateau pika
(O. curzoniae) Daurian pika
Daurian pika
(O. dauurica) Tsing-ling pika
Tsing-ling pika
(O. huangensis) Nubra pika
Nubra pika
(O. nubrica) Steppe pika
Steppe pika
(O. pusilla) Afghan pika
Afghan pika
(O. rufescens) Moupin pika
Moupin pika
(O. thibetana) Thomas's pika
Thomas's pika
(O. thomasi)

Subgenus Conothoa: Chinese red pika
Chinese red pika
(O. erythrotis) Forrest's pika
Forrest's pika
(O. forresti) Gaoligong pika
Gaoligong pika
(O. gaoligongensis) Glover's pika
Glover's pika
(O. gloveri) Himalayan pika
Himalayan pika
(O. himalayana) Ili pika
Ili pika
(O. iliensis) Koslov's pika
Koslov's pika
(O. koslowi) Ladak pika
Ladak pika
(O. ladacensis) Large-eared pika
Large-eared pika
(O. macrotis) Muli pika
Muli pika
(O. muliensis) Black pika
Black pika
(O. nigritia) Royle's pika
Royle's pika
(O. roylei) Turkestan red pika
Turkestan red pika
(O. rutila)

Family Leporidae
Leporidae
(Rabbits and Hares)

Pentalagus

Amami rabbit
Amami rabbit
(P. furnessi)

Bunolagus

Riverine rabbit
Riverine rabbit
(B. monticularis)

Nesolagus

Sumatran striped rabbit
Sumatran striped rabbit
(N. netscheri) Annamite striped rabbit
Annamite striped rabbit
(N. timminsi)

Romerolagus

Volcano rabbit
Volcano rabbit
(R. diazi)

Brachylagus

Pygmy rabbit
Pygmy rabbit
(B. idahoensis)

Sylvilagus (Cottontail rabbits)

Subgenus Tapeti: Swamp rabbit
Swamp rabbit
(S. aquaticus) Tapeti
Tapeti
(S. brasiliensis) Dice's cottontail
Dice's cottontail
(S. dicei) Omilteme cottontail
Omilteme cottontail
(S. insonus) Marsh rabbit
Marsh rabbit
(S. palustris) Venezuelan lowland rabbit
Venezuelan lowland rabbit
(S. varynaensis)

Subgenus Sylvilagus: Desert cottontail
Desert cottontail
(S. audubonii) Manzano mountain cottontail
Manzano mountain cottontail
(S. cognatus) Mexican cottontail
Mexican cottontail
(S. cunicularis) Eastern cottontail
Eastern cottontail
(S. floridanus) Tres Marias rabbit
Tres Marias rabbit
(S. graysoni) Mountain cottontail
Mountain cottontail
(S. nuttallii) Appalachian cottontail
Appalachian cottontail
(S. obscurus) Robust cottontail
Robust cottontail
(S. robustus) New England cottontail
New England cottontail
(S. transitionalis)

Subgenus Microlagus: Brush rabbit
Brush rabbit
(S. bachmani) San José brush rabbit
San José brush rabbit
(S. mansuetus)

Oryctolagus

European rabbit
European rabbit
(O. cuniculus)

Poelagus

Bunyoro rabbit
Bunyoro rabbit
(P. marjorita)

Pronolagus (Red rock hares)

Natal red rock hare
Natal red rock hare
(P. crassicaudatus) Jameson's red rock hare
Jameson's red rock hare
(P. randensis) Smith's red rock hare
Smith's red rock hare
(P. rupestris) Hewitt's red rock hare
Hewitt's red rock hare
(P. saundersiae)

Caprolagus

Hispid hare
Hispid hare
(C. hispidus)

Lepus (Hares)

Subgenus Macrotolagus: Antelope jackrabbit
Antelope jackrabbit
(L. alleni)

Subgenus Poecilolagus: Snowshoe hare
Snowshoe hare
(L. americanus)

Subgenus Lepus: Arctic hare
Arctic hare
(L. arcticus) Alaskan hare
Alaskan hare
(L. othus) Mountain hare
Mountain hare
(L. timidus)

Subgenus Proeulagus: Black-tailed jackrabbit
Black-tailed jackrabbit
(L. californicus) White-sided jackrabbit
White-sided jackrabbit
(L. callotis) Cape hare
Cape hare
(L. capensis) Tehuantepec jackrabbit
Tehuantepec jackrabbit
(L. flavigularis) Black jackrabbit
Black jackrabbit
(L. insularis) Scrub hare
Scrub hare
(L. saxatilis) Desert hare
Desert hare
(L. tibetanus) Tolai hare
Tolai hare
(L. tolai)

Subgenus Eulagos: Broom hare
Broom hare
(L. castrovieoi) Yunnan hare
Yunnan hare
(L. comus) Korean hare
Korean hare
(L. coreanus) Corsican hare
Corsican hare
(L. corsicanus) European hare
European hare
(L. europaeus) Granada hare
Granada hare
(L. granatensis) Manchurian hare
Manchurian hare
(L. mandschuricus) Woolly hare
Woolly hare
(L. oiostolus) Ethiopian highland hare
Ethiopian highland hare
(L. starcki) White-tailed jackrabbit
White-tailed jackrabbit
(L. townsendii)

Subgenus Sabanalagus: Ethiopian hare
Ethiopian hare
(L. fagani) African savanna hare
African savanna hare
(L. microtis)

Subgenus Indolagus: Hainan hare
Hainan hare
(L. hainanus) Indian hare
Indian hare
(L. nigricollis) Burmese hare
Burmese hare
(L. peguensis)

Subgenus Sinolagus: Chinese hare
Chinese hare
(L. sinensis)

Subgenus Tarimolagus: Yarkand hare
Yarkand hare
(L. yarkandensis)

Subgenus incertae sedis: Japanese hare
Japanese hare
(L. brachyurus) Abyssinian hare
Abyssinian hare
(L. habessinicus)

Taxon identifiers

Wd: Q46076 ADW: Lepus EoL: 10840 EPPO: 1LEPUG Fauna Europaea: 213654 Fossilworks: 42176 GBIF: 2436691 ITIS: 180111 MSW: 13500099 NCBI: 9980 WoRMS: 993621

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