Portal:Rabbits and hares

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Down the rabbit warren! Welcome to the rabbits and hares portal!

Rabbits are small mammals in the family Leporidae of the order Lagomorpha, found in several parts of the world. There are seven different genera in the family classified as rabbits, including the European rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus), cottontail rabbits (genus Sylvilagus; 13 species), and the Amami rabbit (Pentalagus furnessi, an endangered species on Amami Ōshima, Japan). There are many other species of rabbit, and these, along with pikas and hares, make up the order Lagomorpha.

A house rabbit is a domestic rabbit kept as a pet for companionship, who lives inside the home with his owners. House rabbits usually have an indoor pen and a rabbit-safe place to run and exercise, such as a living or family room. They are easily trained to use a litter box and can learn to come when called.

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Still life by Johann Georg Seitz

Rabbits and hares in art have variable mythological and artistic meanings in different cultures. The hare is often associated with moon deities and signifies rebirth and resurrection. It is a symbol of fertility and sensuality, and appears in depictions of hunting and spring scenes in the Labours of the Months. Joseph Beuys, who always found a place for a rabbit in his works, saw it as symbolizing resurrection. The Welsh sculptor Barry Flanagan was best known for his energetic bronzes of hares which he produced throughout his career.

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Netherland Dwarf
The Netherland Dwarf is a popular breed of domestic rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) originating in the Netherlands. Smaller than most rabbit breeds, Netherland Dwarf rabbits weigh 500g to 1.6kg (1.1lbs to 3.5lbs) and are usually kept as pets or exhibition animals. They are not typically used as sources of meat or fur because of their small size. Most rabbits sold in rabbit shows are Netherland Dwarfs, Netherland Dwarf-derived breeds (often referred to simply as dwarf breeds), or Netherland Dwarf crosses.

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Anita Brookner, sharing her insights
on the fable The Tortoise and the Hare

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Two Rabbits, Pampas Grass, and Full Moon by Hiroshige
Two Rabbits, Pampas Grass, and Full Moon (circa 1849–1851) by Japanese painter and printmaker Hiroshige. Hiroshige produced works in the ukiyo-e genre and is considered one of the last great artists in that tradition. In the 19th century, Claude Monet and Vincent van Gogh were inspired by Hiroshige's works, in particular his landscapes.


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Rabbits will sometimes try to chew on wood furniture.


Did you know…

  • … that rabbit teeth never stop growing?
  • … that when a rabbit is happy it jumps into the air (this is called "binkies")?
  • … that hares sleep during the day and are active at night?

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On other Wikimedia projects

Rabbits and hares on Wikicommons Rabbits on Wiktionary Leporidae on Wikispecies
Images Dictionary Species directory

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