Science Says Rabbits and Hares are Different, But are They?
It is very common for people to call a hare a rabbit, then to be corrected by someone who holds the belief they are an entirely different species. The conversation usually ends in a google search agreeing with the latter. So its seems that science agrees that a Hare and Rabbit are different, but it doesn't end there.
Despite what the common person believes science often gets things wrong, a lot. It is important that we don't just blindly believe what ever scientists publish without critical analysis. So instead of just googling the answer to our question and just leaving it there, we need to do some critical analysis of this scientific consensus and conduct a reality check.
So what actually determines whether an animal is apart of a specific species?
A commonly agreed upon idea is that if an animal can procreate with another that means it is the same species. But this is just straight up incorrect.
There is a whole category of animals called hybrids that result from two different species producing offspring, therefore invalidating the definition of a species. This is a perfect example of where science gets it wrong.
But even if that definition was correct, it still wouldn't mean rabbits and hares are different species. I have yet to see scientific valid evidence that shows it is not possible for a rabbit to breed with a hare, and I have looked everywhere. And just because something has not happened yet does not mean it is impossible.
We have had a look at what science believes, but what about society overall?
Society holds the belief that all dogs fall under the same species, and science agrees. But the problem with this is that the differences between a wolf and a chihuahua are astronomical relative to a rabbit and hare. For one to say all breeds of dog are the same species but are rabbit and hare are not is illogical. It is disingenuous to apply the belief to one group but not the other.
This is just another double standard society has when it comes to applying its values. To be fair we have to equally apply our values logically and consistently across the board and not let our biases affect our decision making.
In conclusion, until further evidence and scientific consensus is provided, hares are ultimately a subspecies/breed of rabbit, it is as simple as that.