Tiere Detailseite Headerbild Schneehase

Snow Hare

(Lepus timidus)


  • Size: 48-60cm
  • Weigth: 1,8-3,5kg
  • Occurrence: Alpine region, Northern Europe, North Asia
  • first mating: March/April

Animals in the Oberallgäu

Native animals are the real outdoor pros. No one moves so confidently in the terrain, knows important loopholes, knows how to camouflage themselves and always has dangers in sight.

Tiere Detailseite Trennerbild Schneehase


The mountain hare inhabits open areas above the timberline, at altitudes from 1000 to 3500 meters. It very rarely uses underground burrows to rest. In winter, it also retreats to forested areas and digs holes in the snow to seek either shelter or food.


In summer, the mountain hare feeds on herbs, grasses, buds and berries, in winter it feeds increasingly on tree bark and roots.


A long list of natural enemies endanger the mountain hare, such as lynxes, foxes, martens, crows, birds of prey, diseases and the harsh living conditions. 
But it can also be disturbed by people who are out and about in its habitat in the Oberallgäu at dusk or in the dark. Especially in winter, an escape results in a high additional energy consumption!


The mountain hare is nocturnal, only in summer, when the nights are short, it is partly active during the day. In contrast to the brown hare, it is not a loner, but lives in sometimes larger groups. 
Females give birth up to three times a year to two to three young, which are nest fledglings and can immediately move on their own. Each young is assigned its own place in the territory, where it is regularly visited and nursed by the mother. In this way, it is raised to be a loner.
Due to numerous enemies, nature has come up with something unique: Already before the birth of the young in early summer a mating takes place again, so that the doe is "doubly pregnant", whereby despite the short mountain summer several births per year are possible. 


There is practically no difference in appearance between males and females. The coat changes three times during the year: in autumn it changes from grey-brown to white, becomes grey-brown again in spring and changes to brown in summer. The short tail is uniformly coloured (unlike the brown hare, it is not black on the upper side).
The back feet are very hairy and have particularly spreadable toes - this "snowshoe function" makes moving around in deep snow much easier. In addition, the winter fur, whose hairs are filled with air for better insulation, provides excellent protection against the cold.


Therefore, note in the Oberallgäu:

  • On your hiking and snowshoeing tours as well as ski tours, avoid apere areas (areas where the snow has already melted away) and areas overgrown with bushes.
  • When planning your tour, avoid being out at dusk or in the dark.
Icon Schneehase