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Copulation in the Wild Rabbit, Oryctolagus cuniculus

Ian Rowley and B. C. Mollison
Behaviour
Vol. 8, No. 1 (1955), pp. 81-84
Published by: Brill
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4532823
Page Count: 4
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Copulation in the Wild Rabbit, Oryctolagus cuniculus
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Abstract

1. Copulation in the Wild Rabbit has been observed very rarely and never adequately described. 2. Four separate observations on this activity are given. 3. The respective roles of male and female are described in detail and the importance of co-operation from the female despite apparent quiescence, emphasised. 4. Since three of the four instances witnessed occurred in the hour before sunset (sunset - 47 mins ± 3 mins) a peak or sexual activity at this time is postulated. 5. Considering the large number of rabbits under observation in daylight, and at the height of the breeding season, it is considered that the pre-sunset peak is neither the main or only peak of sexual activity. 6. The intense activity of the males observed during coitus is irreconcilable with the only previous published description. /// 1. Beim Wildkaninchen hat man die Begattung nur sehr selten beobachtet und noch nie hinreichend beschrieben. 2. Vier Begattungen werden einzeln geschildert. 3. Das Verhalten des Rammlers und das der Häsin werden eingehend beschrieben. Obwohl das Weibchen unbeteiligt zu sein scheint, wirkt sie doch entscheidend mit. 4. Drei Paarungen fanden 47 ± 3 Minuten vor Sonnenuntergang statt. 5. Bedenkt man, wie zahlreiche Kaninchen bei Tage, zudem auf der Höhe der Paarungszeit beobachtet wurden, so ist anzunehmen, dass der soeben erwähnte abendliche Gipfel der Geschlechtstätigkeit weder der höchste noch der einzige ist. 6. Im Gegensatz zu der einzigen früheren Beschreibung begatten die Rammler ausserordentlich aktiv.

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