Sunday, January 9, 2011


With temps well below zerro this morning, the cottontail rabbits decided to risk eating in the daytime as well as at night at the feeders.

This bunny looked pretty normal until it turned its head sideways.  Those sure look like antler tips sticking out behind its ear until you look closer.

Rabbits sometimes have growths on their ears/heads caused by the Shope papilloma virus. They can grow quite large, I've seen them twice as long as their ears.  They eventually fall off and don't seem to effect the rabbits.

Still, they look pretty weird.
The growths on this rabbit are still quite small, but in a few months they may get 8 or 10 inches long.  Maybe this rabbit will pose again.  The long growths seem to be where the world wide myths of "Jackalopes" comes from.  Google jackalopes and you will find rabbits with antlers and other attachments are quite popular in art, taxidermy, and story.

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