Protect the Mountain Hare from Local Extinction

  • by: Juan J
  • recipient: Scottish Natural Heritage
August to February is a dangerous time to be a mountain hare. During that time, every day it is open season on the furry wild rabbit that calls Scotland home. But, according to several conservation groups, due to uncontrolled killing, the bunny is being shot into extinction.

Mountain hares are considered a pest on shooting estates which engage in full scale population assaults on the rodents during open season. They do so to protect the terrain for other, more “valuable” game, such as grouse for which hunters pay big bucks to hunt.

Yet, because there are few controls regulating the culls, no one knows just how many hares are being killed a year. One of the most recent estimates has the count at around 25,000 for the years 2006-2007. Another estimate says up to 14% of their population is annihilated annually. At those levels conservationist say the hare could go extinct locally in some upland areas, meaning that this important animal could be hunted to nonexistence in one of it’s most important habitats.

The culling and hunting of the mountain hare is causing serious damage to their population and if they disappear it will have irreversible repercussions on the ecosystem. It is time for Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) to step up and ban hare killing until the true cost of the kills have been studied.

We must stand together to protect the iconic mountain hare from extinction. Please sign the petition and let's tell SNH to do their duty and end hare hunts and culls now.
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