Cottontail Bunnies – Understanding Bunny Nests

A nesting bunny’s scent glands have not yet developed, and they do not put off an odor of their own. They will remain odorless for much of their juvenile development. They absorb odors around them, becoming odor camouflaged, and blend into the environment.

The mother rabbit does have mature scent glands, however, and leaves a scent wherever she rests. Except for short visits to feed and tend to the kits, she stays away from the nest so her own odor does not linger.

We are often asked if a nest can be moved because of dangers such as those from dogs. The answer is: NO! Because the babies do not put off an odor, even the mother cannot find them if they have been moved.