The Volcano rabbit is one of the smallest species of rabbit in the world and is believed to be one of the most primitive rabbit species in the world. The Volcano rabbit’s name is derived from its unique environment as they are only found around four prominent volcanoes in Mexico, the Volcano rabbit is not found anywhere else in the world.
Sadly the Volcano rabbit population is currently in decline mostly because of their habitat being so close to Mexico City. Due to being so close to humans the Volcano rabbit’s are losing their habitat to human expansion and are often hunted for food or even just target practice.
Upon first inspection the Volcano rabbit may just look like any other type of rabbit with thick dark brown fur and a gray underside, however on closer inspection characteristics like small round ears, almost no tail and very short legs define this unique type of rabbit.
Although the Volcano rabbits are not found outside of Mexico there are a handful of isolated populations away from the slopes of the volcanoes but these are very few and far between. The four volcano slopes where these unique rabbits reside are the Tlaloc, El Pelado, Iztaccihuatl and Popocatepetl volcano slopes. The Volcano rabbits tend to be found in the dense pin forests and undergrowth that covers the volcano slopes and usually at around 3000 meters in elevation.
Because of the dense undergrowth on the volcanic slopes the Volcano rabbit’s can spend most of their time actually up on the surface although they will occasionally shelter in burrows that have been dug by other animals as the Volcano rabbit’s do not have the means to dig burrows.
Living in family groups of up to five individuals the Volcano rabbit’s feed mostly on leaves, bark and herbs and are nocturnal which means most activities take place during the night. Not much is known about the breeding cycle of the Volcano rabbits but it is known that females generally give birth to a litter of 2 or 3 young after successful mating.