- Published: 19 January 2010
- Hits: 3975
AnMarsha Rodman age 8'. of San Mateo, California,
Why does a jack rabbit turn white in the winter?
A certain jack rabbit can turn white any day in the year ‑ at least he can turn half of himself white. Most of his furry coat is greyish brown. His long floppy ears are all white and so is his soft underneath, This amazing fellow can shift his white spots around as he cho ores, Sometimes he chooses to put all the white on one side and all the dark on the other. He is careful to flop his ears over on the white side. This fellow is the whitesided jack rabbit.
We do not know why the white‑sided jack rabbit goes to all this trouble. When chased, he keeps his white side towards his enemy. It does not make him hard to see ‑ quite the opposite. It just may be that he is flashing a danger signal to other jack rabbits in the neighborhood.
We do have a good idea why the snowshoe rabbit changes into a white coat for the winter. He just hates to be eaten by foxes, stoats and hungry ;easels. And _he is smart enough to know that they can only chase him when hey see him. So he hides, he hides out in the open. In the summer, it is ~.iard to spot hi.a brown coat against the brown earth and rocks, In the winter, :t is hard to spot his white coat against the white snow. He is one of many animals that change the color of their coats with the changing seasons. All are trying to make themselves invisible against their backgrounds,