Photographing Wild Rabbits UK
Updated: May 25
Join me as I sit in my garden hide to photograph the wild rabbits in my garden, I will share some fun facts about rabbits, show you my photography behind the scenes best bits, and share with you the super cute rabbits right on our doorstep here in the UK.
Or if you would prefer to read, here is the full transcript:
A couple of days ago now I was lucky enough to have some baby bunnies emerge from under my shed. So, in this video, I'll be sharing some photographs and footage of the beautiful wild rabbits that we have here in the UK and sharing some fun facts about bunnies along the way!
Hello! I'm Roxy and welcome back to my YouTube channel. I'm a zoologist and wildlife photographer who uses social media to raise awareness about animal and climate activism. At the moment, I'm in the UK and we're here in lockdown due to the current covid-19 pandemic. This means that we've been forced to find and appreciate wildlife in our gardens and local area.
I was actually lucky enough to see some baby bunnies emerging from my shed, right here in my garden, which I thought would make the perfect opportunity for a YouTube video. So, with that being said, let's dive straight into this video all about bunnies!
Now most of this footage was actually captured in my trampoline hide, which you can see how I made in this video here. This allows me to get up close to the wildlife without them being easily scared off. For the babies I was really lucky because they have this incredible innate trust in us as humans, so I was able to just lie on the floor with them right by my shed, having them hop about crazily right up close to my leg.
Although I'm calling them wild rabbits, and they're pretty much commonplace throughout the whole of the UK now, they're actually not a native species. They were in fact introduced by the Normans to the UK in the 12th century.
I thought a good way to start would be to go over the differences between wild and domestic rabbits because this is a really frequently asked question. The main difference is that the wild rabbits that we have here are always small weighing about two to three pounds; you don't get any of those giant rabbits that you see some people having as pets out in the wild. The other difference is that they have that beautiful agouti coloration, which means that they are that mottled brownie colour and then the underside of their tail is that bright white, almost like a warning signal to a predator, saying “hey, I've seen you so don't even bother trying to chase me!” Wild rabbits also have a super lean body condition
and they actually only have an average lifespan of about two years which is
compared to about twelve years in the rabbits that we might keep as pets in
I'm now in my trampoline hide which I made to photograph the wildlife in my garden and although it's far from perfect it's actually been amazing how close it's enabled me to get to the wildlife here, because the animals here
really aren't used to people at all, so even though they're still aware of me in the hide; they can smell me, obviously sense my presence, they're much more comfortable, and I really don't think I would have got the shots that I've managed to get throughout lockdown if I didn't build this.
These babies that I have here, when I first saw them, they weren't with mum which indicates that they are fully weaned by the time that they emerged from underneath the shed. Females in the UK actually have their breeding season right from January to July time and through this season they can have up to five litters of babies just in that single year, so they breed
Male rabbits are known as bucks and the females, the mummies, are known as does. The baby bunnies, like the ones I have here in my garden, are actually known as kittens.
One thing I've actually been struggling with with these babies is just how fast they move: it makes it so hard to focus as they're hopping around from one place the other constantly, they just really can't sit still at all!
One thing that a lot of people probably don't realise is that wild rabbits are actually listed as near-threatened on the IUCN Red List. This is because their numbers are declining due to disease, habitat loss, and human-induced mortality. I know that a lot of people who are lucky enough to have access to a garden or green space in their local area have been spending a lot more time outside during this period that we found ourselves in, but there are things that we can all do to help nature and the natural world in our daily lives as well, to help stop all of these precious species on our planet from declining. From the things we eat, the clothes we wear, the way we live our daily lives: we can all make more conscious choices and we can all do more to help protect these really beautiful beings that we share our home with.