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Springhare: Pedetidae - Habitat

burrows springhares soil burrow

Springhares live in areas that have dry and sandy soil. They also live where there are cattle grazing and crop cultivation (areas where preparation for growing crops is occurring). They stay away from rocky ground and areas with a lot of trees, and live in grassland areas.

DEFENSE AGAINST PREDATORS

Springhares have several lines of defense against predators. The first is early detection, which is aided by their wonderful senses of sight, sound, and smell. In the case that these senses do not alert them enough in advance, the second is their ability to quickly hop away with their powerful hind legs. Finally, their third line of defense is to viciously bite and kick, making use of the sharp claws on their hind feet.

Springhares build burrows (also known as warrens) for shelter and protection in the grasslands. They will oftentimes build more than one warren, and they can be up to 32 inches (82 centimeters) deep and can cover up to 1,200 square feet (112 square meters). The burrows are usually created near the largest tree or a clump of bushes within their living area. When digging these burrows, they fold their ears back and seal their nose, so sand does not disturb them. It is easiest for the springhares to dig these burrows when the soil is wet during the rainy season. Sometimes during digging, they will stop, turn around, and push the soil they have collected back with their legs and chest. They then use their hind legs to kick this soil above the burrow to be redistributed on the ground. They sometimes cover the entrance of the burrow with soil from the inside. Springhares also create tunnels within their burrows that can be up to 51 yards (46 meters) long. Springhares also sometimes close down entrances to tunnels within their burrows by sealing them closed. Their burrows are formed in a circular shape and have many entry areas. There can be up to eleven entrances in a burrow. This makes it easier for springhares to escape if a predator, an animal that hunts it for food, gains access into their burrow.

Springhare: Pedetidae - Diet [next] [back] Springhare: Pedetidae - Physical Characteristics

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