Alternatives to live Easter bunnies that are not hare today, gone tomorrow

alternatives to a bunny for an easter gift
alternatives to a bunny for an easter gift

Here comes Peter Cottontail ... and he isn't real after all. The annual warning against giving kids live rabbits for Easter got WalletPop hopping on the bunny trail to find low-cost alternatives.

The Mechanical Rabbit from Tamiya ($18) has plenty of bounce in its step, and its transparency lets young builders watch their mechanical handiwork in motion. The contraption resembles what a Transformer rabbit could look like, without the evil alien baggage. Eight-year-olds can tackle the screwdriver assembly. Smaller kids can play with it as long as a guardian is supervising.

It fits in your Easter basket, too. "Basically it's intended to showcase how to put a basic item together and show basic motion of a little motor," Tamiya spokesman Fred Medel told WalletPop. On the downside, the company Web site says the robot's running time is a mere 40 minutes per alkaline battery.