New York Natural Heritage Program
New England Cottontail
Sylvilagus transitionalis (Bangs, 1895)

New York State Distribution [-]
Various range maps show the former distribution including the southern tier counties, Catskills, and most of the eastern New York counties. Most records are old and actual specimens are known only from Suffolk, Warren, Nassau, Westchester, Rensselaer, and Schoharie counties. Recently, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Endangered Species Unit has conducted survey efforts (skull collection, live-trapping, fecal analysis) from potential counties of occurrence and has discovered extant populations in Columbia, Dutchess, Putnam, and Westchester counties (Litvaitis et al. 2006).

Global Distribution [-]
The New England cottontail previously was widely distributed in New England, extending north to Rutland, Vermont, southern New Hampshire, southwestern Maine, and southwest through eastern New York. The range has been reduced and fragmented. Currently the species is restricted to boreal/montane regions in southwestern Maine, central and southern New Hampshire, perhaps extreme southern Vermont (Litvaitis 1993), Massachusetts (except southeastern part), northern Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New York east of the Hudson River (Chapman et al. 1992). Remnant populations are apparently restricted to five regions: 1) seacoast region of southern Maine and New Hampshire, 2) Merrimack River Valley of New Hampshire, 3) a portion of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, 4) eastern Connecticut and Rhode Island, and 5) portions of western Connecticut, eastern New York, and southwestern Massachusetts (Litvaitis et al. 2006).
Best Places to See
• Southern Columbia County and northern Dutchess County