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Old October 5, 2006, 10:47 AM   #1
Join Date: November 25, 2005
Location: Lakewood, CO
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Jack Rabbit Hunting

Hi everyone. Thanks in advace for reading. This weekend I am finally going back home, from Lincoln Ne to Cambridge Ne, and I plan on doing some shooting. I was looking at the Nebraska Game and Parks webpage, and noticed that it is open season for jack rabbits. Now I've never once gone out shooting jack rabbits. I see pictures of my grand dad back in the old days with those good ole boys with tons of them. Since its not pheasant season yet, and I really want to do some type of hunting, I'm thinking about trying it out. I know nothing about it. Any one here done it, and if so, anyone know the best ways to cook the meat or what its good with. Again, I've never done it and think it could be fun because those little guys are fast and jumpy! Thanks/ -Trev
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Old October 5, 2006, 11:12 AM   #2
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Jack Rabbits

Good luck hunting, here in south Texas I use a Marlin 7000 varmint 22. I have been told to wait till after the first freeze because of some might having worms. I am no expert but it seems like good advice. My hunting buddy’s mom cooks it like chicken mole. Tastes great, please send me any recipes if you get any. Thanks and safe hunting.
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Old October 5, 2006, 12:50 PM   #3
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I used to hunt jacks a lot when I lived in Nevada. It's a kick!
As for eating them, I ate real young ones shot in the spring, but never full-grown ones. For the young ones, season them up, flour them, and fry them.
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Old October 5, 2006, 01:24 PM   #4
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Don't know about the NE area, but around here the best time to go after them is about an hour before sunset. That's when they come out from where ever they're hiding to hit the alfalfa for dinner. Also check the local laws about spotlighting em. If it's ok, you'll have a target-rich environment all night long on any fence line bordering a grain or alfalfa field.

As for eating them, around here we don't--FWP issued a warning of one thing or another but I don't remember the details. But that's where the cottontails come in--they're fantastic fried, BBQ'd or smoked.
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Old October 7, 2006, 12:04 AM   #5
Fat White Boy
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headlights at night and your favorite .22...
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Old October 7, 2006, 08:45 AM   #6
TJ Freak
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Wabbit Hunting

Spotlight and a .22 lots of fun. I've never eaten Jackrabbit, but one of my great uncles once told me that you scalloped out the meat on their hind leg and cooked it like chicken. Of course I believe that them old timers cooked everything like chicken, LOL
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Old October 7, 2006, 09:46 AM   #7
Art Eatman
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Yeah, spotlights at night, and whatever .22 rimfire or whatever varmint rifle suits you. Back when I was just getting into centerfire, my father, his brother and I would go out on back country roads to shoot jacks. My father used a .220 Swift; Uncle Joe used his Varminter (Jerry Gebby's original .22-250.) and I used 110-grain handloads in my '06. (I also loaded 80-grain pistol bullets, which tended to spread rabbit parts over large areas.)

Occasionally there will be a population explosion of jackrabbits. This happened in SW Idaho and northern Nevada in 1980 or 1981. A buddy of mine and I sat above a marshy area not far from Winnemucca and killed over a hundred without leaving the truck. The farmers in Idaho were building vee-shaped trap fences of chicken wire, and then several hundred people would herd a bunch of jacks in and club them...

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Old October 7, 2006, 12:13 PM   #8
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This is a picture taken in about 1933 or 1934 with the .22 single shot I got for my 6th birthday in 1932 and my "trophy" Jackrabbits. It was great sport then because there was a $2.00 bounty (not bad for depression days) on coyotes - ranchers worried about coyotes being a threat to their calves. As a result, the sandhills of western Nebraska where I lived were over run with Jackrabbits and, for a young shooter as I was, it was hog heaven. I used them for food for my best friend (my dog) then and we only ate cottontails.

Incidentally, that building to my left was our "power plant" producing 32 volt electricity which was all that was available to us. It only worked for light bulbs but, that was a giant step up from kerosene lanterns in our very rural area.

OJ -
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Old October 7, 2006, 04:45 PM   #9
silicon wolverine
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In SD spotlighting is illegal for rabbits. The best use i find for them is to keep the coyotes and fox out of our sheep pens and pastures. we have lots of trees around our farm and they supply a ready amount of jack and cottontails. When i was younger and still lived at home id hunt at least three nights a week for rabbits. Id shoot them and haul them out near the dens i could find. I always waited for the 'yotes to come out to eat and i got more than a few doing it that way. Since i left home dad's loss to preadtor depradation had doubled at least and higher some years. Moms garden hasnt fared too well either. I never did eat rabbit as it always seemed really greasy meat.

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Old October 7, 2006, 05:02 PM   #10
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Check with fish & game and the health department for food safety issues. Tularemia can be a a problem with lagomorphs. is a nearly overwhelming source for recipes.
Gee, I'd love to see your data!
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Old October 8, 2006, 07:53 AM   #11
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Use my 10-22 and .17 Marlin on them. If hunting them in somewhat open land don't get hasty....When they run, let them go a ways and whistle with eyes on the sights. They often run a ways and stop to look back if not pursued. That is your second of opportunity. In the Hill country of Texas they are tough and unless they are really young I don't mess with them. Ealier in life, we used to spot light them and I used an old Remington Sportsmaster bolt .22 lr. It is said in my part of Texas that they run in 5 year cycles as well as cotton tails as to numbers available. Found that pretty well accurate over the years. We have a pretty large yote population these days that keep their numbers down significantly.
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Old October 8, 2006, 08:13 PM   #12
Join Date: August 30, 2006
Location: Delmar,Maryland
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jack rabbits

we don't have jack rabbits in our area but have seen hunts via the internet,some of them guys looked overwhelmed shootin them rabbits.If I ever get a chance to go,I would probably use a minigun in 7.62
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Old October 12, 2006, 08:04 AM   #13
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I used to hunt jacks all the time in Arizona, great way to keep your hunting skills sharp. My first rifle was a Ruger M77 in 30-06 amd that's what I used. Loaded 125gr SPs or HPs which were devastating (didn't plan to eat them). Also used 190gr cast bullets cruising along at about 1400fps, these usually split them in two pieces. On a good day would get 10-15 of them. I would still hunt them up and down the washes in the Tortillita Mtns north west of Tucson. Usually hike ten to fifteen miles tracking around. Good exercise and great fun. There ain't ever gonna be a shortage due to hunting, but when developers (Del Webb) started building big subdivisions, and sucking out the ground water, ALL the game disappeared
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Old October 12, 2006, 08:36 AM   #14
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I saw one taken at close range with a 200 gr 340 Wthby !! Only the ears and head remained !!!
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Old October 13, 2006, 09:16 PM   #15
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First, jackass rabbits, the correct original name, are not rabbits, but hares, same group as the varying hare, aka snowshoe rabbit.
Cottontails and swamp rabbits are rabbits.
Hares , if mature, are rather tough and strong, but people eat them anyway, just use more recipes, including using pressure cookers.
The young hares are ok for frying and stew, much over 1/2 grown starts to be chewy.
Rabbits are a bit tough if old, but the flavor is mild even in old ones.
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