South African springhare

Infant at birth is well-developed as they can immediately sit on their hind legs and even run on the second day

Bernard DUPONT

The South African springhare looks like a cross between a rabbit and a kangaroo, causing the scientists’ confusion. They have once grouped with jerboas, porcupines, and scaly-tailed squirrels until, finally, they are given their own family. They have well-developed hind legs that allow them to leap over 2m (6 ft 7 in) in a single jump. Their fur varies from pale grey to reddish-brown, and their tail has a black tip.

These springhares have a strange resting posture where they sit with their hind legs stretching forward and bodies bent between them, the top of the head and ears in direct contact with the ground. This seems to enable them to detect vibrations.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Angola
2016
DR Congo (Kinshasa)
2016
Mozambique
2016
Namibia
2016
South Africa
2016
Zambia
2016
Zimbabwe
2016

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No