Arama They Didn't

3:15 pm - 12/30/2012

Japan's midnight bunny off endangered species list

Japan's unique midnight bunny, said to be the missing link to their fluffy ancestors on the Asian mainland, is off the endangered species list.

The Amami Black rabbits are found only on the tiny islands of Amami Oshima and Toku no shima in the Nansei Islands far out to sea near Okinawa.

The special bunny has seen a series of promotions in status over the years, firstly becoming a natural monument in 1921, protecting it from being hunted. Then in 1963 the bulky bodied, short hind legged rabbits was then further elevated in status to special natural monument, preventing both hunting and trapping of the isolated species.

The short eared black rabbit survived on the tiny Japanese islands which were predominantly free of predators until the onset of introduced species.

Destruction of the rabbit's natural habitat for construction purposes is also said to have contributed to the decline.

Also referred to as the Ryukyu rabbit, it is known for its strange behaviour. This nocturnal forest dweller buries its babies in a hole in the ground, covering them with dirt to evade hungry predators and only returns at midnight to uncover her young while watching out for would be attackers.

The mother then feeds her young milk, before tucking them back into the earth packing the soil down with her front paws.

The furry national treasure breeds only twice a year, giving birth to just one or two young at a time.

deermice 30th-Dec-2012 11:51 pm (UTC)
What good news! It's adorable. :D
royu_kiyo Strange indeed31st-Dec-2012 01:36 am (UTC)
Looks cute and creepy at the same time.
Interesting info about the burying young for protection and being nocturnal.
helldarkangel 1st-Jan-2013 01:10 am (UTC)
Omg it is so cute! I just did an art project about extinct animals. It is so sad. You guys should all check out It lists endangered and extinct animals and information about them.
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