#FactFriday its the time of the week where we introduce a new (slightly winter themed!) animal; the moutain hare (Lepus timidus)
Unlike the brown hare and European rabbit, the mountain hare is native to the UK. They are found in moorland in the Highlands of Scotland, Southern uplands, Peak District and some Scottish Islands. They are classified as near threatened in the UK.
Like several other species in the Highlands, mountain hares have a brown/grey summer coat which turns white in winter dependent on the temperature.
In Ireland, there is a genetically distinct subspecies of mountain hare, Lepus timidus hibernicus.
Mountain hares look similar to brown hares. One way of telling them apart is their ears. Brown hares have long ears whereas mountain hares have shorter ones. Additionally a brown hares fur is… well… brown while a mountain hare has more grey fur (and white in winter).