Washington state biologists rescue 33 pygmy rabbits

Officials have captured 33 endangered pygmy rabbits that survived a wildfire in central Washington state and moved them to other breeding sites.

Biologist John Gallie with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife tells The Seattle Times in a story on Friday that the rabbits were captured late last month after the wildfire burned up sagebrush the rabbits need for food and shelter.

Gallie says that about 70 rabbits died at the 10-acre Beezley Hills breeding site, one of four in the state where biologists have been breeding the rabbits for release into the wild.

Gallie says it will be years before the Beezley Hills site can support a rabbit population again.

But he says the breeding sites were separated to prevent a total loss if a wildfire came through.


Information from: The Seattle Times, http://www.seattletimes.com

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