New England Cottontail Pellet Survey

february, 2020

15feb11:00 am1:00 pmFeaturedNew England Cottontail Pellet Survey11:00 am - 1:00 pm Macricostas Preserve, 124 Christian Street, New Preston, CT 06777

Event Details

Steep Rock Association (SRA), a land trust recognized for excellence in Washington, CT, asks for your participation in a scientific treasure hunt on February 15, 2020 from 11:00 AM – 1:00 PM.

Our group of citizen scientists will search for and collect rabbit pellets to be processed and sent in for lab analysis to determine if SRA’s Macricostas Preserve is still home to Connecticut’s only native rabbit – the New England Cottontail (NEC). NECs require large patches of early successional habitat, preferring forested thickets. The more folks willing to brave dense vegetation, the more likely we are to document this species that has become increasingly threatened by competition from the introduced Eastern Cottontail and diminished habitat availability.

Citizen science is a method where non-professionals contribute to scientific studies. It has proved to be an effective way of performing projects, some that may not be achievable otherwise, while engaging and educating the community. Due to the ecology of NECs, this project is a quality citizen science opportunity.

This study is weather-dependent (requiring a relatively fresh snow). Back-up dates of Sunday, February 16th and Saturday, February 22nd have been scheduled if snow cover on February 15th does not meet protocol requirements. Please register through our website so you receive a cancellation notice prior to the survey date. A cancellation notice will also be posted on our Facebook page.

Participants should meet at SRA’s main Macricostas Preserve parking lot located at 124 Christian Street, New Preston, CT 06777 with warm clothing and winter boots. Depending on snow depth, snowshoes may be advisable. All other equipment will be provided on site. All ages are welcome; however, children must be accompanied by an adult. Registration is required and donations are gratefully accepted. Please register online at or call the office at (860) 868-9131 Monday – Friday, 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM.


(Saturday) 11:00 am - 1:00 pm


Macricostas Preserve

124 Christian Street, New Preston, CT 06777


Steep Rock Association860 868 9131 PO Box 279, Washington Depot, CT 06794

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