Difference Between Rabbit And Hare

Rabbits and hares are two distinct animals with differences in physical features, behavior, habitat, and diet.

Difference Between Rabbit And Hare

Rabbits and hares are often confused with each other due to their similar appearances. However, they are two distinct animals with differences in physical features, behavior, habitat, and diet.

Physical Features

The physical characteristics of rabbits and hares are the most apparent differences. Rabbits are small, measuring around 25-45 cm in length and weighing around 1-2 kg. On the other hand, hares are larger, measuring up to 70 cm in length and weighing up to 6 kg. Hares have longer ears and legs than rabbits. The ears of a hare can measure up to 12 cm long, while those of rabbits measure around 6-8 cm in length. The legs of a hare are also longer with more powerful muscles, enabling them to run faster than rabbits. Their hind legs are longer than their front legs, creating a more upright posture.


Rabbits and hares have different behaviors. Rabbits are social animals, living together in burrows with other rabbits. They are active during the day and spend most of their time grazing on vegetation. Rabbits are also known for their ability to reproduce quickly, with a gestation period of around 28-31 days. They can produce up to six litters per year, with an average litter size of around six. Rabbits are more timid than hares and tend to freeze when they sense danger.

Hares, on the other hand, are solitary animals, except during mating season. They live in simple nests on the ground and are active mainly at night. Hares cover long distances in search of food and can run up to 80 km/h. Their behavior is also different when threatened. Hares prefer to run away from danger, using their strong hind legs to spring away quickly. Hares are more active during the winter months than rabbits, as they have adapted to the colder weather.


Rabbits and hares occupy different habitats. Rabbits usually inhabit grasslands, forests, and swamps, whereas hares live in drier and open areas like deserts, prairies, and meadows. Hares have adapted to living in open environments and can run faster than rabbits to escape predator attacks in the open fields.


Rabbits and hares have different dietary needs. Rabbits mainly feed on grass and other vegetation, and they are known to be selective feeders, choosing only the freshest and most tender plants. They sometimes also feed on fruits, seeds, and bark. Rabbits have an efficient digestive system that helps them extract nutrients from their food.

Hares, on the other hand, are less picky eaters and feed on a variety of vegetation, including grasses, young trees, and shrubs. Unlike rabbits, hares are fast digesters, meaning they can quickly process their food to extract the necessary nutrients.

In conclusion, rabbits and hares are two different animals with distinct characteristics. While they share some similarities in their physical appearance, their behaviors, habitats, and diets are markedly different. Understanding these differences can help you identify these animals and appreciate their unique attributes. Rabbits and hares are an essential part of the ecosystem, and protecting their habitats is crucial for their survival.