Monday, January 10, 2011


It's safe to say that I adore jackalopes! In fact, I desperately want to believe that they exist in the same way an 8 year old girl wants to believe in unicorns. I even have a jackalope tattoo. And to be honest, jackalopes make a lot more sense than some of the animals that do exist. Like an okapi? Or a tapir? What the hell is that? A bunny with antlers seems entirely more plausible.

The mythology of the jackalope can be traced back to the Huichol oral tradition of an animal that was spawned from a rabbit and a deer. It is also possible that the Huichol people actually saw this animal- there was an animal epidemic in the Western United States and Mexico due to a papilloma viral infection which caused horn like tumors to grow on jack rabbits. Interesting.

The myth would come to full folklore status via Douglas Herrick for whom the town of Douglas, Wyoming was named for. Apparently, Douglas concocted this species after he accidentally placed a jack rabbit carcass by a set of antlers in a taxidermy shop. Thus, this was the first taxidermied jackalope and also the reason why Douglas, Wyoming is considered the "Home of the Jackalope" and even trademarked the name in 1965.

Now, a little bit about the habits of the jackalope: It is said that the jackalope is the hybrid of a pygmy deer and a killer rabbit. The jackalope is shy, but can be lured out of hiding by putting a flask of whiskey out at night. The jackalope will drink until intoxication (the jackalope and I have a lot in common), which makes it easier to hunt. It is also said that the jackalope can imitate human voices and is to be considered dangerous if approached.

So, there's a little about the jackalope. And if you find yourself in need of a jackalope belt buckle, no need to leave out a flask of whiskey... $24 and a trip to my etsy shop will suffice.

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