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    National Park Arizona

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  • Tucson Mountain District Roads Closed Due to Flash Flooding

    Several interior roads, including the scenic loop, are closed in Tucson Mountain District (west) due to severe storms and flash flooding on August 26th. Roads will remain closed until further notice. Check the park's facebook page for updated information More »

Rabbits of Saguaro National Park

antelope jackrabbit


Antelope Jackrabbit (Lepus alleni)

The antelope jackrabbit is the largest rabbit in the western hemisphere. They can be distinguished from black-tailed jackrabbits by their larger size, lack of black ear tips, and a broad white patch on their flanks and hindquarters. The antelope jackrabbit is named so because they dodge predators in a manner similar to that of antelope. They are relatively uncommon at Saguaro National Park but can be found in large, sandy washes. Antelope jackrabbits rarely have water available, so they get their moisture from cacti and other plants. They conserve water by resting in the shade during the hottest hours of the day, restricting activities to the cooler times.

black-tailed jackrabbit

NPS/Big Bend National Park

Black-tailed Jackrabbit (Lepus californicus)

Black -tailed jackrabbits are relatively common desert animals at Saguaro National Park. This jackrabbit is recognizable by its large size and black-tipped tail and ears. They prefer open desert areas, but they cannot tolerate extreme dry conditions endured by the antelope jackrabbit. When predators approach, the black-tailed jackrabbit freezes, then suddenly dashes away, leaping in large bounds at speeds of up to 35 miles/hour (56 km/hr)!

desert cottontail

NPS/White Sands National Monument

Desert Cottontail (Sylvilagus audubonii)

Visitors to Saguaro National Park are probably more likely to see a desert cottontail than any other mammal. Because of high reproductive rates, desert cottontails are abundant, despite being an important prey item for everything from rattlesnakes to bobcats to hawks! Female desert cottontails can breed at a young age (3 months) and can have multiple litters in a year.

Did You Know?

Fairy Duster

March and April are the best months to view wildflowers in the Sonoran Desert. Popular flowers include the Mexican golden poppy, the Arizona penstemon, and the Fairy duster.