Due to some extra time on my hands, I’ve put together a brief, inquisitive essay on an animal that no one can seem to catch.
Unpredictable and always ready to attack. If you milk a female while she is asleep on her back you can use that liquid for medicinal purposes, or better yet, as a powerful aphrodisiac. It only breeds during electrical storms which is why it is rumoured to be so rare. If you put whisky out at night, it’ll consume the contents of your flask and become much easier to catch. It can mimic the human voice by saying “There he goes! Over There!” to try and confuse you in your hunt. Fact or folklore? You be the judge as I investigate the truth behind the Jackalope.
The Jackalope is the adopted mascot of Douglas, Wyoming because the first one was sighted there in 1892, apparently. In the town’s centre is a large Jackalope statue, as well as a day in June dedicated to the celebration of the first sighting many years ago. Though, with other readings, I have also found that there were some sightings of the endangered/possibly extinct creature in C17th Germany. The animal, also known as “Deerbunny”, has been sighted by many cultures all over the world,
but how are these photos are achieved is a question I would continually ask myself during my search for the answer. Sure, tales of a powerful liquid to enhance your sex drive found by medicine women and the shaman in days past is exciting and fascinating as well as the idea of luring a wild animal with whisky to get it good and drunk in order to catch. In Douglas, Wyoming, too, you can actually obtain a Jackalope hunting licence. However, the hunting season is restricted from the hours of midnight to 2am on June 31st.
The idea behind the antlers is that a rabbit bred with an antelope (or a deer, or even a goat). What’s bizarre about this mix, however, is that the result animal has more rabbit-esque features. This caused me to assume that innocent rabbits are constantly forced to wear wee Rudolph antlers in order to look dangerous and exotic something that PETA would have a hay day over if they ever found the cowboy who started it. I had to find out why the mythical creature appeared as it did, and it was the moment I had my answer when I realized Pandora’s Box should have remained closed.
Often times, when doing research in a University setting, we are advised not to go to Wikipedia. This time, it was the search-engine that opened my eyes and led me down a path of unspeakable images. The reason that rabbits develop horns is because they have a version of the papillomavirus. The shope papillomavirus causes growths on the poor bunny, resulting it with an inability to eat, with consequential death by starvation. There are more grotesque photographs readily available online if you dare to take a peek at how invasive this version of animal HPV is for the darling, once cuddly mammals. Look with caution.
Once I learned the myth was really just a disease, it made sense that the poor creature could be angry and unpredictable. If you had horns growing all over your body, you wouldn’t be happy. If you were hungry because you had horns coming out of your mouth, you would be unpredictable as well. My only advice now is if you see this “jack-a-lope” not to touch it, because papillomavirus spreads by skin to skin contact. And no one wants extra growths. Especially on their genitals. Use a condom and have safe sex during frosh week!