Monday, January 2, 2012

Morning Jackrabbits in Regina

When I drive through my neighbourhood in winter after dark, I watch for rabbits. White-tailed jackrabbits. From sunset to sunrise, they often leap from shadows along streets and alleys, or run beside my van. (If they stayed still, I wouldn't notice them, grizzled white on gray night snow. But their instinct must say to flee, and they can easily outpace me.)

Caught in headlights in the dark,
this morning's jackrabbit pauses under a tree. 
This morning, returning from the airport three hours before dawn, I saw a pair dash out from an alley. One fled down a side street while the other swerved and crouched for few minutes under a tree.

And yesterday, a rabbit ran along our sidewalk and through the snowbanks on the neighbour's yard. (I have a more pictures of this jackrabbit, below, on my Prairie Nature blog.)

Jackrabbit - photo by Shelley Banks
New Year's Day jackrabbit at dawn
on the snowbank across the street. 

White-tailed jackrabbits live here in summer, too. But summer nights are short and these prairie hares, nocturnal, so winter is the time I watch for them. 

eta: My Facebook and UBC MFA friend Jennifer Wynne Weber points out that it is still the Year of the Rabbit! How appropriate — thanks! 

White-tailed jackrabbits in my neighbourhood

White-tailed jackrabbits live in my Regina neighbourhood. I see them when I'm driving in winter after dark (they dash across the road or run beside me) and pre-dawn, from my living room window (they forage in our yard and at the neighbour's).

Winter is the best time to see these large prairie hares — at least, that's when I see more here. The sun sets now at about 5 p.m. and doesn't rise till after 9 a.m., so nights are long and jackrabbits are nocturnal.

First light of the day, first white-tailed jackrabbit
of the year, on the neighbour's snowbank. 

Grizzled gray, with black-tipped ears.  

Pink nose, black ears, hiding on the sidewalk
across the street from my house. 

What is this? White-tailed jackrabbit or prairie hare.
Location: Regina,Saskatchewan.
Photo dates: New Year's Day, 2012


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...