Managing farmland to conserve the brown hare
Here are some practical steps that can be taken to manage farmland in a way that will encourage the hare population to increase.
Hares are most common in arable areas. However, mature summer crops provide little grazing resulting in hares losing condition and the chance of leveret survival is reduced. A hare’s habitat range can be up to 38 hectares and they will shift their activity between areas as different food becomes available. With this in mind to improve the hares’ habitat on your land you can
Hare numbers have declined in pastoral areas. Hares prefer not to use fields containing stock and increased stocking density has reduced suitable habitat. Mowing and silage production has a detrimental effect on hares – one study showed that up to 22% of the hare population were killed during mowing. Mowing and intense grazing can leave can leave leverets exposed to predators such as owls, foxes or buzzards. Increased use of fertilizer could also have an effect on the fertility of hares.