Okay, in actuality he's probably not new - I'm sure he was here before we were but he's new to us. Mom has always told us of these things called "wild" rabbits but until we moved here, I had never seen one. Now I have.
He visits us in the evening and sticks around if Mom leaves food out for him. He seems to really like the squirrel feed and carrots best. It's weird because even though he does look like a rabbit, there is just something strange about him. Mom says it's the "wild" in him that I don't recognize. "Mom, what exactly is 'wild'?"
"Well, Fluffy, you are a domestic rabbit. That means you were raised to be around humans. A wild rabbit lives out in the wild and prefers to stay away from people." I was puzzled. "But who feeds him?" I asked. "He finds his own food." I stared at her in amazement. "Where does he live?"
"For the most part, he lives in a burrow underground that he digs himself. When he's not there resting he is hopping around looking for his dinner."
"That sounds like a lot of work. Wouldn't he be happier inside with people, with someone to feed him?"
"Not wild rabbits, Fluffy. They have instincts that tell them to stay away from people. They are much happier outside and on their own. Their instincts also tell them how to find food, what is good to eat and what is not and how to avoid getting eaten by predators."
"Eaten?! Oh my goodness! How scary!" I declared. "It's okay, Fluffy. Their instincts are very sharp and they run very fast. Their instincts are what keep them alive out there."
"But what if I went outside, Mom? What would happen to me?"
"Well, you wouldn't fare very well. You see, you don't have the instincts. It would be very confusing for you. You wouldn't know where to find food, you'd have no place to live, you wouldn't be aware of all of the dangers around you. That is why domestic bunnies like you and Binky need to stay inside and wild bunnies can stay outside." she explained. "Well, I am NEVER going outside!"
"Silly Fluffy, Mommy takes you outside from time to time, but I always keep you safe and secure. You are always in a pen so you don't get lost and there is always someone around to watch you and make sure you are never in danger. You have nothing to worry about. Besides, we have a backyard now and your very own patch of grass to run and binky around in. And when it gets warmer, you will all get to play out there - supervised of course."
"Yay! Can I go outside to play tomorrow?" I asked excitedly. "Well, maybe not tomorrow - it's still winter! Perhaps when we have a bit of snow back on the ground, you can go have fun in that. But we will have to wait for spring for the grass to grow."
"Sounds good Mom. In the meantime, can I share my romaine with the wild bunny? He looks hungry."
"Sure, Fluffy, that's very nice of you. I will put some out there. I'm sure he will appreciate it."
So that's what I learned about our new neighbour. He's nice and all, but I sure am glad I am not "wild" like him. I much prefer my life inside with my girlfriend Binky. And Mom and Dad, too. I hope Mr. Wild Bunny has a friend he can snuggle up to. It gets pretty cold out there....