Hares are solitary animals which prefer open country, they live above ground and do not make a burrow although when chased they may seek refuge in a deserted hole. 

Young hares or leverets are born fully furred with their eyes open in a scraping above ground. A doe has 3 or 4 litters of 2 to 4 young a year. The young are born about 6 weeks after mating, after a few days the doe spreads them out leaving them hidden in different places returning for a few minutes each night to suckle them. Their sole protection is to keep very still when threatened. The life span of a hare is on average about 3-4 years.

Hares are not strictly territorial but they have 'ranges' and tend to stay within an area, they are mainly nocturnal. Adults rely on camouflage and speed for survival, they can reach 70 km/hr and maintain 50 km/hr for some time. Hares will often choose to run uphill when chased as their conformation gives them the advantage, they prefer to run down-wind and may leap over creeks, double-back or suddenly lie flat to evade the hounds.  On poor scenting days, beagles have been seen standing on top of the hunted hare without realizing it.  The science of scenting remains a mystery!  It varies greatly with weather and vegetation. Generally scenting is better on damp days when the ground is warmer than the air.


The Hare (Lepus europaeus)