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Image JACKALOPE
The jackalope is a legendary animal described as a jackrabbit with antelope horns on its head. The legend of the rare but nasty creature native to the Midwestern U.S. originated with the cowboys of Wyoming. The true jackalope is a humorous myth. A mounted jackalope is a common souvenir easily manufactured by taxidermists by attaching deer antlers to a hare’s head. Picture postcards of jackalopes are also widespread at gift shops throughout the American west. Curiously, this piece of folklore has a genuine scientific explanation. There really are actual specimens of rabbits with horny growths on their heads. These are not true “horns” but abnormal growths that may be caused by a virus (called Papillomavirus, it is common in cottontail rabbits and is similar to a human version that causes warts.) The legend of the horned rabbit is also part of other cultures. Bavarian folklore (now Germany) has it’s own tale of a stag-deer called the “raurackl”. Researchers suspect that the stories of these creatures around Europe and Asia resulted from sightings of viral-infected rabbits.
- Sharon Hill (Scientist)
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Prof. Chuck Holliday's at Lafayette College:   Jackalope Fans, Take Note
Douglas (WY) Chamber of Commerce:   The Lowdown on Jackalopes
Skeptic Bibliography:   Cryptozoology
Ben Roesch:   Taking a Hard Look at Cryptozoology
Cryptozoology.com:   Cryptozoology
International Society of Cryptozoology:   Cryptozoology
British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club:   Cryptozoology
Museum of Hoaxes:   The Jackalope
The Straight Dope:   Does the jackalope have a rabbit's body but an antelope's horns?
All Things Cryptozoological:   Links
The Cryptozoologist:   Cryptozoology
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