Snowshoe Hare

Camouflaged and speedy

Snowshoe hares are common in many Yellowstone habitats. They are known for their large snowshoe feet and their changing camouflage–brown in the summer and white in the winter. Hares eat plants and prefer to hide in forest underbrush.

In real life, hares are very fast and agile, making them hard to catch. A hare would only provide a wolf with a light snack for a lot of work, so are not a main food source for wolves. However, lynx, bobcats, coyotes, foxes, weasels, some hawks, and great horned owls also hunt hares. Good thing hares have lots and lots of babies!

Snowshoe hares are mostly preyed on by Yellowstone's smaller carnivores but they can be fun to chase.

Quick Facts

Snowshoe hare (Lepus americanus)

Unlike many of Yellowstone's small mammals, hares are active year round. They change from white fur in the winter to brown in the summer for camouflage. Their first defense is to stay motionless and hope they remain unseen. Once flushed out, they are quick and agile, able to change directions quickly to escape predators.

SIZE: 1.5-2 kg (3-5 lbs)

TOP SPEED: 43 kph (27 mph), able to leap 3 meters (10 ft)

DIET: Herbivores (eat plants): grasses, herbs, and shrubs.

Snowshow Hares in WolfQuest

Snowshoe hares are common in some areas and can provide a small snack.

Carcasses can be carried.

Hares will provide good hunting practice for young wolves.