Skip to main content
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, North American Mammals

place holder

  Lagomorpha · Leporidae · Sylvilagus floridanus

Search the Archive
 • Species Name
 • Family Tree
 • Conservaton Status
Collections
 • Skulls
 • Bones and Teeth
Field Guide
 • Map Search
   Including search by
     • Location
     • Ecoregion
     • Species
     • National Park
 • About Maps
dotted line
   Glossary
   Teacher Resources
   About the Site
dotted line
Smithsonian Institution
Copyright Notice
Privacy Notice
 

Sylvilagus floridanus



Eastern Cottontail



Order: Lagomorpha
Family: Leporidae

Image of Sylvilagus floridanus
Click to enlarge. (88 kb)

Conservation Status: Least Concern.


Eastern Cottontails share habitats with seven other cottontails and six species of hares. They have been transplanted to areas outside their historically widespread range, which included swamps, prairies, woodlands, and forests. They have two ways of escaping danger: a zig-zag dash or a slink, in which they creep along, low to the ground, with their ears back. Eastern Cottontails are among the most prolific lagomorphs. Females can have seven litters a year, producing as many as 35 young. Litters, usually of 36, are born in a fur-lined nest of dried grasses and leaves.

Also known as:
Florida Cottontail

Sexual Dimorphism:
Females are larger than males.

Length:
Average: 430 mm
Range: 395-477 mm

Weight:
Range: 801-1,533 g

References:

Allen, J.A., 1890.  Descriptions of a new species and a new subspecies of the genus LepusBulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 3:159-160.

Links:

Mammal Species of the World (opens in a new window).

Mammalian Species, American Society of Mammalogists' species account *
* PDF reader available here (opens in a new window).

Distribution of Sylvilagus floridanus

Image of Sylvilagus floridanus
Click to enlarge. (110kb)

Skull of Sylvilagus floridanus
Click to enlarge. (27kb)

Image of Sylvilagus floridanus
Click to enlarge. (141kb)

Image of Sylvilagus floridanus
Click to enlarge. (99kb)

Image of Sylvilagus floridanus
Sylvilagus floridanus (Eastern Cottontail), Okaloosa
Click to enlarge. (160kb)