Our mystery animal is the European Rabbit, known scientifically as π˜–π˜³π˜Ίπ˜€π˜΅π˜°π˜­π˜’π˜¨π˜Άπ˜΄ 𝘀𝘢𝘯π˜ͺ𝘀𝘢𝘭𝘢𝘴.

Rabbits can start having young from the age of four months. When conditions are good (for example there is a lot of food around), they can have five or more litters in a year, with four or five babies in each litter. That’s a lot of bunnies, and it’s easy to see why the rabbit is one of the most widely distributed and abundant mammals in Australia. Unfortunately, grazing and burrowing by rabbits causes a multitude of environmental problems, from erosion, to reduced survival of native plants, to completely changing habitats and landscapes. Not surprisingly, rabbits have been targeted by several control programs aimed at reducing their numbers. It is important to maintain animal welfare standards when planning control programs, as even though rabbits are a pest species, they must be still treated humanely.

See just how far rabbits have spread on the Atlas of Living Australia