Posts tagged “Eastern Cottontail

Story Behind the Photo: Eastern Cottontail

Eastern Cottontail Rabbit, Safety Harbor, FL

A few weeks ago I snapped this photo of our neighborhood rabbit, Peter Cottontail. He is an Eastern Cottontail rabbit and lives in the lush landscaping of my next-door neighbor’s front yard. I thought he was the only rabbit in my little part of our neighborhood which I realize is rather naive as they are known to breed like, well, rabbits. This weekend we met what I assume is one of his offspring in quite an unexpected way!

Early on Sunday morning my husband noticed ripples across the top of our pool, which was odd as the pump was off. It’s not uncommon for a small frog to get into the pool and make it’s way to the skimmer, and we rescue a few a year. Ready to scoop out the first frog of the season, my husband took the top off of the skimmer and found something furry instead. As it turns out, a small bunny had gnawed it’s way through our screened enclosure and ended up in the pool. We think he was in search of water since it’s dry season here and hasn’t rained for weeks, but who knows for sure.

We have no idea how long he was in the pool, but had thankfully made his way to the little floating flap in the skimmer and was perched on top, keeping his face out of the water. After scooping him out of the pool we realized he had hurt one of his front paws and called the best vet hospital in town for assistance. The fine folks at Blue Pearl Veterinary Services do some pretty amazing things, including working with a wildlife rehab organization that was delighted to help our little swimmer recoup from his big adventure.

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Story Behind the Photo: Eastern Cottontail

Eastern Cottontail Rabbit, Safety Harbor, FL

With Easter Sunday just around the corner, it seemed fitting to share a photo of a bunny today. The Eastern Cottontail is one of the most common rabbits in North America, and this one lives in my next-door neighbor’s front yard amidst their lush landscaping. Known as “Peter Cottontail” around our house, we see him often around dusk venturing out for some dinner.

Rabbits have long been a symbol of fertility and abundance due to thier ability to breed large litters often, especially in early spring. In ancient times, rabbits were the favorite animal of the Germanic goddess of spring, Eastre, symbolizing renewal and fertility in the spring. The exact history is a little vague, but the tradition of a rabbit delivering brightly colored eggs to children on Easter Sunday is thought to have began in Germany in the 1500’s. The tradition was introduced in the United States in the 1800’s by German settlers in Pennsylvania Dutch country. As the tradition spread across the country, the modern day Easter Bunny was born.

I hope you each have a wonderful weekend and a very happy Easter!

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