A Bodaciously Bold Big Bend Texas Blue Bunny Brazenly Browses
Beside A Beautifully Blooming Brownsville Bush

24 " X 36"
By Sherrell Hazlewood


The Texas Blue Bunny

When an adventurous world traveler says, "Texas" in any remote corner of this planet earth, the most illiterate aborigine will make the association and respond with "Texas Blue Bunny". There are Japanese, Afghanistan, Jamaicans, Australians, Russians, and others who flock to Texas annually in hopes of spotting the ubiquitous Texas Blue Bunny. Many tourists to Texas will demand to see a Texas Blue Bunny even before they have seen Seven Flags, Stock Tank World, Slithersliden, or the Alamo.

Texans show a special pride in displaying their affection for their unique Blue Bunny in a variety of ways. Texans flock to art galleries that feature Blue Bunny paintings in hopes of finding affordable works to grace their homes. Some Texans even have their walls painted with Blue Bunny scenes of the Texas Hill Country to soothe their nostalgia for the days when there was a Texas Hill Country. Blue Bunny scenes are found on T- shirts, coffee cups, cowboy boots, and stationery. There are many Texas artists who make a very good living by painting nothing but Texas Blue Bunnyscapes.

There is no greater demonstration of Texan culture than to see a Texan sitting in a trucker's cafe wearing his Texas Blue Bunny emblazoned T-shirt under his Texas Blue Bunny embroidered "gimme" cap with his Texas Blue Bunny hand made cowboy boots drinking coffee from a hand painted Texas Blue Bunny coffee mug while he gazes up at a wall sized Texas Blue Bunny Hill Country scene displayed behind the waitresses and the cafe counter. This display of Texan culture is even more complete when one realizes that this tough Texan, reaches into his hip pocket from time to time to read and reread a tear stained letter with beautiful Texas Blue Bunny borders that he has received from his mother or his girl friend. If he wants to answer the letter, he can always purchase a Texas Blue Bunny scene post card at the truck stop.

What is this creature, this animal, this mammal that inspires such folk worship and devotion in Texas? Scientifically speaking, the Texas Blue Bunny is a young rabbit, a small long- eared mammal (Oryctolagus cuniculus texanus caeruleus) that is related to the ordinary hares but differs from them in that the Blue Bunny's young are born naked and blue. Within a week or so the Blue Bunny young are covered with downy light blue fur that becomes somewhat ultramarine blue in the more mature Blue Bunny. The mature Blue Bunny develops its unusual markings at about six months. These distinctive markings are irregular patterns of cadmium red, yellow ochre, titanium white, and cobalt blue spots on the Bunny's back.

There are no distinguishing characteristics between the male and the female Texas Blue Bunny. Only a highly trained A&M Ph.D. Bunniologist or another Texas Blue Bunny can tell the difference. No one else seems to care. There is no more awe-inspiring sight than a green field teeming with Texas Blue Bunnies in the springtime. If you listen closely for the comments of spectators to this beautiful natural phenomena, you will not hear questions as to whether these are girl Blue Bunnies or boy Blue Bunnies. There is no need for anyone to debate whether it is a girl Blue Bunny or a boy Blue Bunny unless the government decides to use the Texas Blue Bunny for scientific experiments. Then; of course, equal opportunity and quota laws apply and sex must be determined.
Unlike the Texas armadillo, there has never been a documented instance of a single Texas Blue Bunny road kill.

The Blue Bunny's habitat is the prairies, savannas, grasslands, and pastures of Texas. The Blue Bunny is a locally common resident over most of the state of Texas, but apparently withdraws from the Panhandle in winter. The Blue Bunny's winter distribution is poorly known, but there have been no winter sightings of the Blue Bunny north of Big Springs or west of No Trees. There has been Blue Bunny springtime sightings as far west as El Paso, as far south as Brownsville, as far east as Texarkana, and as far north as Amarillo.

The Texas Blue Bunny is apparently extinct in Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, and Austin. One is no more likely to see a Texas horn toad than a Texas Blue Bunny in these barely habitable metropolises. The last known Austin Blue Bunny sighting was in 1949 near Zilker Park. The Texas Blue Bunny disappeared from the Dallas-Fort Worth area shortly before completion of DFW Air Terminal. There have been no Blue Bunny sightings in the Houston area since 1940. There have been reported sightings in the San Antonio area as late as 1970, but this has not been confirmed.

Historically the Blue Bunny was plentiful from the Colorado Rockies to Louisiana. Fossil remains have been found in Alaska and Patagonia. Ms. Frieda Blutcher in her 1856 pioneer classic, Bumping Across Texas, tells of seeing Texas Blue Bunnies every day from their wagons during the forty-three days it took Frieda and her family to cross Texas on their way from Miami to Los Angeles. Cuthbert Greenwood writes in his 1834 diary that he and his trapping party saw Texas Blue Bunnies cavorting with beavers from Taos to Denver as late as September of that year. Steiner McCoy's romantic paintings of 18th century Western Americana include numerous scenes depicting Blue Bunnies and buffaloes.

What is behind this new interest in the Texas Blue Bunny? Why should we concern ourselves with an animal that can't be eaten, won't make our car run better, can't be hunted, and has no commodity value? Perhaps the answer is that the value of the Texas Blue Bunny is in the beauty and admiration that inspires us when we see the Texas Blue Bunny hopping wild and free over the unspoiled green Texas prairies of springtime.

There are still Blue Bunnies in Texas. If you are persistent; and not near an interstate or a freeway, you will see them. Until the entire surface of the state of Texas becomes a high-rise parking lot for Dallas or Austin, one can hope that the Texas Blue Bunny survives. There will probably always be Texas Blue Bunnies. But, no one is for sure. Texans should not take chances. Let some one else worry about those polar bears, seals and whales. Texans must save the Texas Blue Bunny.


Obese Texas Blue Bunny

Obese Texas Blue Bunny
Mixed Media (Acrylics and Pen)
5" X 7"
By Sherrell L. Hazlewood

An Over Eating Obese Texas Blue Bunny Poses
Somewhere Near Pecos


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