However, it is unlikely that this was the only factor leading to the eventual extirpation of all known subpopulations. The Columbia Basin pygmy rabbit represents an isolated portion of the northern-most extent of the species historic distribution. They are also capable of short bursts of speed in order to escape predators. Pygmy rabbits are preyed upon by weasels, coyotes, badgers, bobcats, birds of prey, owls, foxes, and sometimes humans pygmy rabbits are sometimes difficult for hunters to distinguish from other rabbit species. During the winter months their diet consists primarily of sagebrush, while in in the summer and spring their diets become more varied, with the addition of grasses, particularly native bunchgrasses to the sagebrush.
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They give alarm calls and other vocalizations, indicating some degree of sociality. The pygmy rabbit is the smallest member of the family Leporidae, which includes hares and rabbits. Pregnant females dig secret, relatively shallow burrows, known as natal burrows. In , the Columbia Basin pygmy rabbit breeding strategy was revised to increase the likelihood of successful population establishment.