Click on the language to view common names.
Common Names in English:
Arabian Hare, brown hare, Cape hare, Desert Hare, European hare
Common Names in French:
Lievre Du Cap, LI?VRE DU CAP
Common Names in Spanish:
LIEBRE DEL CABO
Typically found at an altitude of 0 to 5,271 meters (0 to 17,293 feet).
The following information applies to L. capensis on the
Arabian Peninsula. This species breeds
all year round
, with one or
two offspring in each litter
. L. capensis prefers shrubs
rather than grasses, to shelter
under in summer. However, whether
this is a limiting factor
or not is not known. L. capensis
has experienced habitat
loss since the 1950's resulting from urbanization,
overgrazing, agricultural encroachment and infrastructure related
to tourism (Drew et al.
2004). It has been noted that pastureland
that has been overgrazed by domestic livestock is favored (Flux and
In Africa, it is commonly associated with open habitats (Boitani et al. 1999). Reproduction varies according to location (Happold pers. comm. ). Equatorial expanses have a year-round breeding season , with up to eight litters per year and 1.3-2.0 young per litter (Flux 1981). In Kenya, L. capensis produces six to eight litters per year with a mean litter size of 1.5 (Happold pers. comm. ). Hares at higher altitudes will have smaller litters than those at lower altitudes (Happold pers. comm.). Home range for this species varies, depending on the type of habitat in which it is found (Flux and Angermann 1990 ). There is little information available on the diet of L. capensis, but is presumed to vary according to habitat as well (Flux and Angermann 1990). (Ref. 282745).
List of Habitats:
- 3 Shrubland
- 3.5 Shrubland - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
- 3.8 Shrubland - Mediterranean-type Shrubby Vegetation
- 4 Grassland
- 4.5 Grassland - Subtropical/Tropical Dry
- 8 Desert
- 8.1 Desert - Hot
- 8.2 Desert - Temperate
- 14 Artificial/Terrestrial
- 14.1 Artificial/Terrestrial - Arable Land
- 14.2 Artificial/Terrestrial - Pastureland [more info]
- Whittaker & Margulis,1978
- C. Linnaeus, 1758
- (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Grobben, 1908
- (Haeckel, 1874) Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Bateson, 1885
- Cuvier, 1812
- Jawed Vertebrates
- Goodrich, 1930
- C. Linnaeus, 1758
- (Rowe, 1988) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Wible et al., 1995) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- McKenna, 1975
- McKenna, 1975
- McKenna, 1975
- (McKenna, 1975) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Parker & Haswell, 1897) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Owen, 1837) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- (Mckenna, 1975) M.c. Mckenna & S.k. Bell, 1997
- (McKenna, 1975) McKenna, in Stucky & McKenna, in Benton, ed., 1993
- (Szalay & McKenna, 1971) McKenna, 1975
- (Illiger, 1811) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Brandt, 1855
- Series: ref="http://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/title/5803 ()
- Order: Lagomorpha () - Brandt, 1855
- Mirorder: Duplicidentata () - (Illiger, 1811) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Grandorder: Anagalida () - (Szalay & McKenna, 1971) McKenna, 1975
- Superorder: Preptotheria () - (McKenna, 1975) McKenna, in Stucky & McKenna, in Benton, ed., 1993
- Magnorder: Epitheria () - (Mckenna, 1975) M.c. Mckenna & S.k. Bell, 1997
- Cohort: Placentalia () - (Owen, 1837) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Supercohort: Theria () - (Parker & Haswell, 1897) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Infralegion: Tribosphenida () - (McKenna, 1975) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Sublegion: Zatheria () - McKenna, 1975
- Legion: Cladotheria () - McKenna, 1975
- Superlegion: Trechnotheria () - McKenna, 1975
- Infraclass: Holotheria () - (Wible et al., 1995) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Subclass: Theriiformes () - (Rowe, 1988) M.C. McKenna & S.K. Bell, 1997
- Class: Mammalia () - C. Linnaeus, 1758
- Superclass: Tetrapoda () - Goodrich, 1930
- Infraphylum: Gnathostomata () - auct. - Jawed Vertebrates
- Subphylum: Vertebrata () - Cuvier, 1812 - Vertebrates
- Phylum: Chordata () - Bateson, 1885 - Chordates
- Infrakingdom: Chordonia () - (Haeckel, 1874) Cavalier-Smith, 1998
- Branch: Deuterostomia () - Grobben, 1908
- Subkingdom: Bilateria () - (Hatschek, 1888) Cavalier-Smith, 1983
- Kingdom: Animalia () - C. Linnaeus, 1758 - animals
Status: Accepted Name
First described: Blackburn Révérend Thomas Further Notes on Australian Coleoptera, with Descriptions of New Genera and Species. XXXI. Transactions and Proceedings and Report of the Royal Society of South Australia, Adelaide 26 (2): 288-321., 1902.
Last scrutiny: 15-Aug-2007
Generally, the entire taxonomy of L. capensis throughout its range is unclear. Taxonomic review of the species is urgently needed; otherwise, it is possible that some forms may go extinct before they are formally identified.
Hoffmann and Smith (2005) restrict L. capensis to the South African distribution, citing no evidence of gene flow between the southern and northern ranges. A list of synonyms is provided based on four geographic locations (South Africa, East Africa, Arabia and Near East, and northwest Africa), which are informal subdivisions of L. capensis sensu lato. The authors suggested that these four groups might represent distinct species. In the Near East and Arabia L. c. arabicus; in South Africa L. c. aquilo, L. c. carpi, L. c. granti; East Africa L. c. aegyptius, L. c. hawkeri, L. c. isabellinus, L. c. sinaiticus; and L. c. atlanticus, L. c. schulmbergeri, L. c. whitakeri in northwest Africa (Hoffmann and Smith 2005).
According to Harrison and Bates (1991) there are 8 subspecies in Arabia: L. c. syriacus (Syria, Lebanon, northern Israel); L. c. sinaiticus (southern Israel, Sinai); L. c. connori (east of the Euphrates in Iraq); L. c. arabicus (western Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Yemen); L. c. cheesmani (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, UAE, Yemen, Oman); L. c. omanensis (UAE, Oman); L. c. atallahi (Bahrain, Qatar?); L. c. jefferyi (Masirah Island, Oman). The taxonomic status of L. c. jefferyi needs clarification, as it may represent a good species. Hares present in Qatar also require taxonomic investigation.
The taxonomic position of the Sardinian Hare is unresolved. Hoffmann and Smith (2005) include the Sardinian Hare as one of the unassigned synonyms L. mediterraneus Wagner, 1841 or typicus Hilzheimer, 1906, in L. granatensis. Analysis of the mtCR-1 sequence indicated that Sardinian Hares form a monophyletic clade with North African Hares (Scandura et al. 2007). A phylogenetic analysis of mtCR-1 sequences from Tunisian and Egyptian Hares characterized them as monophyletic and separate from L. capensis (Ben Slimen et al. 2006). However, a study of the nuclear gene pool of L. capensis, L. europaeus and the North African Hare indicated that the North African Hare as well as L. europaeus belong to L. capensis (Ben Slimen et al. 2005), supporting Petter's (1959, 1961) hypothesis of the inclusion of L. europaeus in capensis. Ben Slimen et al. (2008a) suggest that in a case such as the genus Lepus, where evolution is "rapid and to some extent reticulate ", species designation based solely on mtDNA is misleading without examination of the nuclear gene pool . Ben Slimen et al. (2008a) has shown that genetic differentiation between L. capensis and L. europaeus could be attributed to geographic distance rather than divergence . They speculate that gene flow may be occurring in the Near East where distributions meet resulting in the potential for intergraded populations. However, Ben Slimen et al. (2008b) propose that "a combined phylogenetic, phylogeographic, and population genetic approach,…, based on various nuclear and mitochondrial markers and including other biological characters, such as phenotypic and morphometric data ," is needed for conclusive evidence of a single species complex. In light of this continuing uncertainty regarding the taxonomic status of the Sardinian and North African Hares, both will remain included in capensis and L. europaeus retains its taxonomic status as a distinct species.
Many treatments indicate that the range of L. capensis extends into China, Mongolia and Russia; however, recognition of L. tibetanus and L. tolai as distinct species removes consideration of L. capensis as occurring in this region (Hoffmann and Smith 2005)..
Members of the genus Lepus
ZipcodeZoo has pages for 58 species and subspecies in this genus:
L. alleni (Antelope Jack Rabbit) · L. alleni alleni (Antelope Jack Rabbit) · L. americanus (Snowshoe Rabbit) · L. americanus americanus (Snowshoe Hare) · L. americanus klamathensis (Snowshoe Hare) · L. americanus seclusus (Bighorn Mountain Snowshoe Hare) · L. americanus tahoensis (Sierra Nevada Snowshoe Hare) · L. americanus washingtonii (Washington Snowshoe Hare) · L. arcticus (Arctic Hare) · L. arcticus arcticus (Arctic Hare) · L. brachyurus (Japanese Hare) · L. brachyurus brachyurus (Japanese Hare) · L. californica (Black-Tailed Jack Rabbit) · L. californicus (Black-Tailed Jack Rabbit) · L. californicus bennettii (Black-Tailed Jackrabbit) · L. californicus californicus (Black-Tailed Jack Rabbit) · L. callotis (Beautiful-Eared Jack Rabbit) · L. callotis callotis (Beautiful-Eared Jack Rabbit) · L. callotis gaillardi (White-Sided Jackrabbit) · L. capensis (European Hare) · L. capensis capensis (Brown Hare) · L. castroviejoi (Broom Hare) · L. comus (Yunnan Hare) · L. coreanus (Korean Hare) · L. corsicanus (APPENINE HARE) · L. europaeus (European Brown Hare) · L. fagani (Ethiopian Hare) · L. flavigularis (Tehuantepec Jack Rabbit) · L. granatensis (Iberian Hare) · L. granatensis granatensis (Granada Hare) · L. habessinicus (Abyssinian Hare) · L. hainanus (Chinese Pinyin) · L. insularis (Espiritu Santo Jackrabbit) · L. mandshuricus (Manchurian Hare) · L. microtis (African Savanna Hare) · L. nigricollis (Black-Napped Hare) · L. nigricollis nigricollis (Indian Hare) · L. oiostolus (Woolly Hare) · L. oiostolus oiostolus (Woolly Hare) · L. oistolus (Woolly Hare) · L. othus (Beringian Hare) · L. othus othus (Alaskan Hare) · L. peguensis (Siamese Hare) · L. saxatilis (Savannah Hare) · L. saxatilis saxatilis (Scrub Hare) · L. sinensis (Chinese Hare) · L. sinensis sinensis (Chinese Hare) · L. starcki (Ethiopian Highland Hare) · L. tibetanus (Desert Hare) · L. timidus (Eurasian Arctic Hare) · L. timidus timidus (Arctic Hare) · L. tolai (Tolai Hare) · L. townsendi (White-Tailed Jack Rabbit) · L. townsendii (White-Tailed Jack Rabbit) · L. townsendii campanius (White-Tailed Jackrabbit) · L. townsendii townsendii (Western White-Tailed Jackrabbit) · L. victoriae (African Savanna Hare) · L. yarkandensis (Yarkland Hare)
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Accessed through GBIF Data Portal December 07, 2007:
- Berkeley Natural History Museums, University of California Museum of Paleontology DiGIR provider
- European Environment Agency, EUNIS
- Field Museum, Mammal specimens
- Institute of Nature Conservation PAS, National System of Proetcted Areas
- Israel Nature and Parks Authority, Israel Nature and Parks Authority
- Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, Vertebrate specimens
- Louisiana State University Museum of Natural Science, Mammal specimens
- Marine Science Institute, UCSB, Paleobiology Database
- Michigan State University Museum, Vertebrate specimens
- Museum of Texas Tech University
- , Mammal specimens
- Provider, Online Zoological Collections of Australian Museums
- Royal Ontario Museum, Mammal specimens
- University of Alaska Museum of the North, University of Alaska Museum Mammal Collection
- University of Michigan Museum of Zoology
- , Mammal specimens
- University of Washington Burke Museum, Mammal Specimens
- Biodiversity Heritage Library NamebankID: 107247
- Catalogue of Life Accepted Name Code: ITS-727842
- Global Biodiversity Information Facility Taxonkey: 13837488
- Integrated Taxonomic Information System (ITIS) Taxonomic Serial Number (TSN): 180117
- IUCN ID: 219151
- Zipcode Zoo Species Identifier: 130508
- Mean = 358.110 meters (1,174.902 feet), Standard Deviation = 837.160 based on 615 observations. Altitude information for each observation from British Oceanographic Data Centre. [back]
- Drew, C., O'Donovan, D., Simkins, G., Al Dosary, M., Al Khaldi, A.M., Mohammed, O.B., Al Nuaimi, A.S.M., Al Mutairi, M.S., Al Habhani, H.M., Sami Amr, Z., Qarqas, M. & Abu Baker, M.A. 2008. Lepus capensis. In: IUCN 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 01 February 2012. [back]