Facts About the New England Cottontail Rabbit
  • NE Cottontails are the only cottontail rabbit native to New England.  The more common Eastern Cottontail was brought to New England to be hunted.
  • The NE Cottontail seems to be less able to sense predators from far away than other rabbit species found in New England today.  For that reason, if it does not have a sheltering habitat, it is more likely than other rabbits to be caught by a predator.  

NECottontail.com wants you to know more about New England cottontails so... 

              we've added more links!

The New England Cottontail: Investigating a Market-Based Approach to Habitat Management:   Info on the NE Cottontail, as well as habitat credits and more.

A number of local, state, and federal organizations exist that can provide technical and financial assistance related to managing for the NEC. The State of Maine and various groups in Maine, in particular, have done an extraordinary job in developing resources:

Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife: www.maine.gov/ifw

US Fish & Wildlife Service Endangered Species Program: www.fws.gov/endangered

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service: www.me.nrcs.usda.gov

Partners for Fish & Wildlife: ecos.fws.gov/partners

Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge: www.fws.gov/northeast/rachelcarson    A wonderful preserve that has been incredibly helpful with our efforts at NECottontail.com.  The Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge has created habitat for the New England Cottontail.

Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve: www.wellsreserve.org    The Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve is in the process of creating habitat for the New England Cottontail.

Environmental Defense: www.environmentaldefense.org

York County (Maine) Soil & Water Conservation District: www.yorkswcd.org

Maine’s Landowner Incentive Program (LIP): Focuses on landowners managing their lands for rare plant and animal habitats. http://www.mainenaturalareas.org/docs/lip/

Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP): Provides assistance to agricultural producers (includes private, non-industrial forestland) to implement conservation practices. http://www.me.nrcs.usda.gov/programs/EQIP07.html

Partners for Fish & Wildlife Program: Partnership opportunities for private landowners who are willing to work to help meet the habitat needs of migratory birds, inter-jurisdictional fish, federally-listed endangered, threatened or other declining or imperiled species. http://www.fws.gov/northeast/partners/

Wildlife Habitat Incentive Program (WHIP): Assistance for landowners for developing, improving or managing wildlife habitat or for restoring natural ecosystems on eligible land. The program places primary emphasis on enhancing habitat for fish and wildlife species experiencing declines or those with significantly reduced populations. http://www.me.nrcs.usda.gov/programs/WHIP.html

US Fish & Wildlife Service - Journal Entry:  New England Cottontail Surveys on Ten National Wildlife Refuges in the Northeast (Sept. 30, 2006).  In winter 2005-2006, biological staff from Rachel Carson, Stewart B. McKinney , Parker River, Rhode Island Complex and Eastern Massachusetts Complex National Wildlife Refuges collaborated on a project to survey New England cottontail on ten different refuges in the northeast region.

New England Cottontail Brochure.  Downloadable PDF brochure from Forests for Watersheds & Wildlife, the habitat conservation program of the American Forest Foundation.

Fact Sheet: New England Cottontail (Sylvilagus transitionalis)  An excellent article on the NE Cottontail.

Booklet:  The Landowner's Guide to New England Cottontail Habitat Management.  This booklet provides an introduction to many beneficial practices and provides contact information for obtaining assistance in your area.  

    Electronic Download:  The Landowner's Guide to New England Cottontail Habitat Management. 

Powerpoint: Life History, Status and Management of the New England Cottontail, by Anthony Tur, US Fish & Wildlife Service, New England Field Office, Concord, NH

Article:  New England Cottontail: Rabbit at Risk.   This article from the US Fish & Wildlife Service discusses the NEC's disappearance.