Latest on New England Cottontails in Rhode Island

Just finished talking to a biologist at Ninigret NWR in Rhode Island who told me as far as they know there are only New England Cottontails in Great Swamp WMA north of the refuge and there may be a few in Ninigret which was the last confirmed place but that was a few years ago.  They have released some in Great Swamp and are managing them there and have a breeding pen at Ninigret but it is in a restricted area of the refuge not open to visitors.  There aren’t any in the pen now anyway and won’t be until next year.  They wanted to get rid of some of the Eastern Cottontails in the refuge before releasing any onto it but missed their window for this year.  So it seems the place to have any chance right now in seeing them in RI is Great Swamp.  For me CT and NY are closer sites with confirmed rabbits, but if I get out to the RI and MA area I will check out Great Swamp and Mashpee in MA.  Just wanted to let fellow mammalers know:-)



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