Great Basin Naturalist


Botanical content of black-tailed jackrabbit diets was determined by microhistological examination of fecal samples collected from six different vegetation types in southern New Mexico on three dates. Grasses comprised the largest component of the jackrabbit diets, with dropseed species (Sporobolus spp.) and black grama (Bouteloua eriopoda) the most abundant grasses in the diets. Leatherweed croton (Croton pottsii) and silverleaf nightshade (Solanum elaeagnifolium) were important forbs on most vegetation types. Diet composition varied in response to season and vegetation type. Grasses were important during the summer growing season, while forbs were selected during their growing season (summer or winter-spring). Shrubs were less abundant in the diet than grasses and forbs.