Rabbits of the Sonoran Desert

Desert Cottontail

Desert Cottontail, photo by Paul Berquist, Tucson

One of the most common animals we and our guests see here in the beautiful Sonoran desert is the cottontail rabbit photographed here by wildlife photographer Paul Berquist of Tucson, Arizona.  Because so many different animals prey on them such as snakes, hawks, and coyotes, most don’t live past the first year of life.  For that reason, they reproduce in large numbers starting at three months of age.  Their only real defense is their good hearing, eyesight, and speed. They love the environment here at our Tucson Bed & Breakfastwhere we are a Certified Wildlife Habitat, having lots of flowers and desert growth as well as two wild animal ponds where they can drink when water is hard to come by in the dry desert.

Antelope Jackrabbit

Antelope Jackrabbit, Photo by Paul Berquist, Tucson

If one sits quietly long enough outside our protected patios and courtyards, you might even see another type of rabbit which is actually a “hare”, the Jack Rabbit.  It is much larger than the cottontail with extremely long back legs which allow it to jump as high as 15 feet over brush and run as fast as 35 miles an hour when chased by a predator. This high jump also allows it to look around to see which way its enemy is headed. His ears are also very long. Most often we see one as we are walking or driving down the long lane to our B & B inn.

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