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Text and photos by Nick Baker, unless credited to others.
Copyright ゥ Ecology Asia 2024







Burmese Hare

Family : Leporidae
Species : Lepus peguensis

Head-Body Length : up to 50 cm
Tail Length : up to 8 cm

The Burmese Hare is one of just three species of hare occurring in Southeast Asia, the others being the Chinese Hare Lepus sinensis and the Indian Hare Lepus nigricollis.

This species inhabits dry forest, grassland and disturbed areas in lowland and hilly areas. By day they shelter in shaded areas, often hiding in dense grass, but by dusk they become active and remain so for much of the night.

Like other species of hare, the Burmese Hare typically does not make use of burrows. They feed on vegetation such as grass, low shrubs and tree bark.

Adults are large, with a head-body length of up to 50 cm and probably weigh around 1.5 kg. Their hind feet and legs are long and powerful: they typically flee from danger at great speed.

Their ears are long, measuring up to 8.5 cm, with a distinctive black tip. Their body fur is grizzled black, brown and fawn, with reddish-orange fur on the nape, and the underside is mainly white. The tail measures up to 8 cm: this is brownish-black on top and white underneath.

Around 3 or 4 young hares are typically born, several times a year: their fur colour gives them excellent camouflage in areas of dry grass.

The Burmese Hare is known from Myanmar, Thailand (excluding the south), Cambodia, Laos and southern Vietnam.

Fig 1 : A young Burmese Hare, also known as a leveret, crouches amongst dried grass in an uncultivated field overgrown with wild grasses and thorn bush in Kaeng Krachan District, Phetchaburi Province, Thailand.

Fig 2 : Abandoned, overgrown agricultural land: habitat of the Burmese Hare in Figure 1.

All photos thanks to Charles Currin.

References : M3, M5

Smith, A. T. & Johnston, C. H. (2008). Lepus peguensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. (Accessed 29 March 2018).

Fig 1
ゥ  Charles Currin
Fig 3
ゥ  Charles Currin