The Annamite striped rabbit is not currently held in captivity, but a captive “insurance” population would help combat the species’ decline.
Annamite striped rabbits live in subtropical/tropical moist lowland forests and rainforests.
Because of the challenges that remain in the effective management of protected area of the Annamite striped rabbit’s range, it is vital that conservation stakeholders consider within the next few years the establishment of a captive insurance population of this species. Currently, the rabbit is not held in captivity.
Although it is true that the urgency to establish an insurance population of Annamite striped rabbit is lower than for some other Annamite endemic mammals, notably saola (Pseudoryx nghetinhensis), it would be prudent to secure an ex situ population of Annamite striped rabbit in the near future as the general snaring-driven declines are unlikely to slow in coming years.
Establishing a captive population for Annamite striped rabbit should be less difficult than for the much larger and rarer saola. Unlike the saola, the rabbit still exists in detectable densities within several forest blocks in both Viet Nam and Lao PDR, and it should be much easier to capture, in part because of its habit of becoming immobile when encountered with a headlamp at night.
Although the Annamite striped rabbit has potentially a low detectability by camera-trapping as conventionally practiced in Indochina, it appears to have been detected by all camera-trapping efforts of more than a few thousand camera-trap-nights in wet evergreen forest.
Indeed, as long as proper international expertise to oversee the care of captured individuals can be secured, there seems little downside in establishing an insurance population sooner rather than later.