RFI: Volcano Rabbit
I’m thinking about visiting Mexico sometime this summer for mammal watching and am in the process of gathering info on species (I’ve already got a bunch of pretty good gen to work with). I’m planning on visiting Chihuahua (Copper Canyon area), Colima/Michoacan, Mexico City area, and Oaxaca (probably saving Baja and Nuevo Leon for another trip) and have lots of target species, so any other gen would be really appreciated. Specifically, I am planning to visit Tehuantepec, Huatulco NP, La Placita (Michoacan), Mexico City area, and Sierra Tarahumara.
I’m having a bit of trouble getting decent sites to try for Volcano Rabbit (very high on my list of course!), as it’s all either old research papers (many from places where they’re now extinct) or imprecise markers on iNaturalist. It seems one of the better spots, the road to Tlamacas, is now closed.
From what I can tell, Popo-Izta NP is the place to be, but specifically where – any current info would be really appreciated on specific sites where I’d have a decent chance of seeing one of these animals. Thanks!
Hi Venkat, a non mammal watching mate of mine was climbing one of the Volcanoes a couple of weeks ago and saw what I assume was Volcano Rabbit. He said in the Amecameca area but I don’t know more than that. I can try to get more info when I am back from Africa in a week or so. By the way, Pygmy Spotted Skunk is pretty easy to see around Massaya Volcano in Nicaragua
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The entire saddle between Itza and Popo is good habitat. If the road is closed from both sides, you might be able to sneak in on foot anyway, it’s less than 10 miles walk. I’d also get myself some kind of official-looking paper stating that I’m doing important research, that might impress whoever is manning the roadblock. There are also some trails up Itza from San Rafael that reach the right habitat.
In Tehuantepec, plan on spending at least 2 (better 3) nights driving in Mar Muerte area if you want to see the jackrabbit for sure. They were already difficult to find when I was there in 2003.