European rabbit

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European rabbit

Where did they come fromThey originally came from Europe, northern Africa and they were introduced into Australia and New ZealandWhat do they eat European rabbits usually go hunting for their food at night. they eat green grass and herbs. They also dig under grass to get to roots and seeds.

History (Book)The cute, little furry bunnies arrived here with the convicts on the first fleet in 1788. But these bunnies never did get really well established. That happened in 1859 when a man called Thomas Austin set the scene for Australia’s rabbit plague. Austin lived near Geelong, in Victoria. He must have been a manof habit, in England on the weekends, he always went shooting live animals. He wanted to keep up his ritual in Australia, so he got his brother in England to send him out 24 grey rabbits and 5 hares.

European rabbit

Rabbits around a waterhole at the myxomatosis trial enclosure on Wardang Island in 1938. (National Archives of Australia)

This is a map of where European Rabbits could be found.2007

Basic factsThe Scientific name for a European rabbit is: Oryctolagus Cuniculus The European rabbits is a common rabbit and is usually seen. With all the rabbit species the one found the most is the European rabbit. The rabbit is also called the domestic rabbit.The species is now spread all over other continents like Australia, Africa, New Zealand and South America.

HabitatThe European rabbit prefers dry areas near the sea level with soft sandy soil (easy burrowing). Brushy fields are preferred for the cover they provide, but forests are also inhabited. Cultivated land was once well-suited, but this is no longer the case due to modern plowing techniques which destroy rabbit burrows. Particularly in central Europe, O. cuniculus has learned to coexist with humans in cities, making its home in parks and cemeteries as well as gardens and lawns. Human activities, particularly the spread of agriculture, have often inadvertently helped this species to colonize new areas. (Parker, 1990)

What problems have they caused The European rabbits have transformed millions of kilometres of good agricultural land and turned it into a semi-desert. By stripping the plant cover and by shredding trees. Some ways to get rid of themPoison, fire, destroying their burrows, deep ploughing, fumigating burrows.what it looks likeColourMost are a grayish brown and their bellies are a paler colour. Some species are also found whiteLooksEuropean rabbits have long, upright ears. It is a furry animal. The rabbit is a four legged animalLengthThey are usually 13.5 inches to about 20 inches in length. The tails are about 4cms to 8cms generally.Weight European rabbits usually weigh between 1kg to 2.25kgs.

Bibliography • forests, fleece & prickly pears by Dr Karl Kruszelnicki••••••••••


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