The hare (Lepus europaeus) is the only representative of the hares in Europe. Its occurrence is all over Europe, except for the northern parts of Scandinavia. Here he is replaced by a white hare, which is adapted to life in the mountains and in inhospitable conditions. The field hare is also found in western Asia.
Its coloring is grayish with a white underside. It has black ears with black tips. This is, on the one hand, a typical sign difference between a rabbit and a hare.
The hare weighs around 2 kg and grows to a length of around 70 to 80 cm.
In the Czech Republic, hares are hunted in the field only on joint hunts, when even in the 1970s the number of hares caught reached 1 million. Since then, the number of hares has decreased significantly. Today, the number of hares caught is around 30,000.
The field hare lives on a relatively small area of up to 50 hectares. That is why large fields of monocultures do not suit him, because thanks to this the hare gets into a food monodiet trap and dies.
The highest numbers of hares are in southern Moravia, in Polabí and Přerovsk. In essence, it is a very agriculturally intensive management of fields with the cultivation of various crops that are suitable for hares.
Otherwise, it is found throughout the entire territory of the Republic. Sometimes it is found in higher numbers, somewhere you can’t see hares. Everything correlates with the number of predators or the number of wild pigs, which are significant pests of hares.
The field hare looks for a field landscape where smaller fields with borders, draws and small meadows alternate. It very often takes refuge in large forest complexes, where it finds plenty of food. It has enough cover here and escapes agricultural sprays, which hares do not tolerate well.
The hare lives a solitary life. Only during the hounding season (hare breeding season), which starts from January, most often in February, and lasts at different periods until autumn, more hares cluster together. Mostly, these are units up to dozens of hares in one location together. Hares chase bunnies, over which they fight. They stand up and so called boxing.
In the Czech Republic, the hare hunting period is from November 1 to December 31. Hares can be hunted by shooting on joint hunts or with the help of predators. Both of these methods belong to one of the most beautiful autumn experiences ever.
Previously, hare hunting was a regular part of every corner of the republic, and hundreds of hares were shot at each hunt. Today, this time is over and in most of the territory of the republic, hares are not hunted at all or only for raffle in units of hunted pieces.
Despite this unfortunate trend, there are localities in the Czech Republic where there are still plenty of hares and they can afford to organize hunts with a harvest of several dozen to hundreds of individuals. These are primarily South Moravia, the Třebíč region, Olomouc and several localities in central Bohemia. These are mostly field hunts, in which there is not a very large representation of wild pigs. This situation obviously correlates with the numbers of the hare and wild boar population, which thus have a significant influence on the local hare population.
The field hare is hunted in small-scale hunts, which are organized in autumn. Specific leches on the hare are the so-called circular ones, where you go around the leche and slowly move towards the center. This reduces the distance between the shooters and the hunters, and the hares run out between the shooters from cover. If the distance allows, it is possible to shoot both inside and outside the circular lens. From a certain distance, it is only allowed to shoot outwards, so as not to endanger the opposing party with a shot.
This type of hunting makes sense to do only in well-secured hunting grounds where there are plenty of pheasants and hares. Undoubtedly, other game can be hunted in this way, such as the fox that is found in the given lake.
Hare hunting by birds of prey has a long history in the Czech Republic. Of course, with the decreasing number of hares, this hunt is all the more difficult. In essence, this is the so-called “Czech lech” crawling, where the hunters go between the falconers at a distance of 3 to 5 hunters and one falconer. A well-organized hunting field is used as the terrain. The hawk is most often used to hunt hares, but also the sea eagle or the golden eagle.
Field hare is hunted in joint hunts, which are organized in autumn. Good clothing is needed for comfortable hunting, as bad weather is a matter of course during this period. A shotgun with shot sizes from 4.5 to 5.1 mm is used for hare hunting.
Hare venison is truly a delicacy and, thanks to the low status of hares, also a great rarity. It is important to have a properly matured hare. This means letting him hang for at least a week at temperatures around 4°C, which is not such a problem during his hunting season. On the other hand, it is necessary to remember the hygiene of the caught hare and make it excrement, because the pellets usually damage the insides of hares and the intestinal contents get into the abdominal cavity, where it continues into the meat, which thus loses its taste and nutritional value.
Once the hare is properly matured, it can be prepared in a culinary way. Hare has really aromatic meat, which may not suit every diner. Its spicy and at the same time delicate taste, combined with sirloin sauce, makes it an uncompromising delicacy. Hare tenderloin is a non-competitive sauce together with currant or cranberry semi-sweet sauce.
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Your Huntastic Team