Look Closely to See that Snowshoe Hare

The snowshoe is a species of hare that lives in boreal forests and other places with similar climates. Boreal forests cover a geographic area in the northern latitude where it is below freezing much of the year. This region circles the globe and is a primary carbon filter for the earth.

Snowshoe Hare Facts

  • Hares and rabbits, though closely related, are not the same animal. One key difference comes from birthing. Hares come out of the womb fully furred and ready to hop around in about an hour. In contrast, rabbits are hairless and helpless animals when first born who need mothers for survival for the first two months of life.
  • Hares are herbivores, meaning they feed on plants. However, in contrast to rabbits that eat leafy-type plant tops, a hare’s diet is harsher because of roots, twigs, and bark.
  • Baby hares are leverets.
  • Hares have longer ears and legs than rabbits.
  • The snowshoe hare lives above ground in fallen trees and other ground-nesting places.
  • Unlike rabbits that prefer the social environments of families and groups, snowshoe hares are solitary creatures.
  • Snowshoe hares get their name from the large padded rear legs and paws that act as snowshoes as they move around above the snowpack.

A hallmark of a snowshoe hare is its ability to dramatically change its coat to help it hide from predators. From white in winter to splotchy brown, you might need to look close to see one.