Not far from the coast of the Atlantic, Lord Roland Watson Beldon Maxwell VIII—Junior for short—lives among a constantly changing menagerie in Virginia Beach. Junior’s typical week is spent eating, getting pushed around in a stroller, and representing CLIMATES Exotic Animal Rescue. Oh, Junior is a 25-pound rabbit.
The Bunny Hutch, which is part of CLIMATES Exotic Animal Rescue, is set up like a behind-the-scenes-only version of a zoo. It offers tours of its mammal room full of rats and ferrets; its reptile room containing lizards and snakes; and its outdoor area, complete with chickens and pigs. Visitors who show up at the right time can help feed chameleons, take a monitor lizard for a walk, or brush the bunnies.
Among those rabbits is the famous Junior. At 25 pounds of pure fluff, he’s a mascot for the Bunny Hutch and the only animal at the facility who isn’t up for adoption. But he loves getting visitors.
Junior’s father, King Darius, is the current Guinness World Record holder for “longest rabbit” (they measure length rather than weight to prevent encouraging overfeeding). He weighs an astonishing 50 pounds, and it’s been predicted that quite a few of his children may surpass his record. At three years old, Junior is only about 25 pounds, but he’s still growing.
According to the Bunny Hutch, he’s the largest bunny in the U.S.—and no one has contended that yet. Junior was born in Worcester, England, in 2014. He was sent to the Bunny Hutch when he was about 12 weeks old. His breed, Continental Giant, is usually only found in Europe.