When I returned from a trip to Roma and St George on Wednesday evening, I thought I was seeing things.
Calmly munching on what passes for a front lawn at our place was a fairly large, and very healthy hare. I have no idea whether it was male or female, but it was pretty robust looking.
The other surprising thing was that it was not at all discomforted by my presence, even though I made a couple of trips removing luggage from the car, and would have been no more than five metres away.
I took a couple of photos, but given the descending sun, and the fact that they were taken through a window, they're not wonderful. The brief video displayed from from my iPhone is a little better.
According to the Victorian Department of Environment and Primary Industries -
The hare became a widespread species throughout much of south-east Australia by 1870. Spreading at an approximate rate of 60 kilometres per year, hares crossed the Murray River in 1875, where they made their way along the western slopes and tablelands of New South Wales. By 1900, hares had reached the Queensland border and become a major agricultural problem in northern and western Victoria.
I don't know how long they've been around this neck of the woods, or how far North they've ranged, but this one looked well established in suburban Toowoomba.
It was munching contentedly on some green shoots, and given the unhappy state of the lawn due to a dry Spring so far, I decided to give it the "move on" message.
It looked quite miffed and was very reluctant to leave.
Our two dogs completely ignored it, which was surprising, as they usually take strong exception to any critter (including birds and lizards) encroaching on our property.
For all you fauna tragics out there, The scientific name is Lepus europaeus.
Please forgive the outrageous pun..........