Elmer Fudd is hunting, and he says, "Be vewy, vewy quiet! I'm hunting wabbits!" Daffy Duck lures Elmer to Bugs Bunny's burrow and watches from aside while Elmer attempts to shoot Bugs. But Bugs informs Elmer that it isn't rabbit season, but instead duck season. Daffy emerges, irate, and attempts to convince Elmer that Bugs is lying.
Their conversion breaks down into Bugs leading Daffy to admit it is duck season by a number of verbal plays and reverse psychology, for example:
- Bugs: "Duck season!"
- Daffy: "Rabbit season!"
- Bugs: "Duck season!"
- Daffy: "RABBIT SEASON!"
- Bugs: "Duck season!!"
- Daffy: "RABBIT SEASON!!"
- Bugs: (reversing the flow) "Rabbit season!"
- Daffy: "DUCK SEASON!!!"
- Bugs: "Rabbit season!!!"
- Daffy: "I say it's duck season, and I say FIRE!"
Once Daffy admits it is duck season, Elmer fires his shotgun at Daffy, causing the duck to suffer a temporary setback before he tries again. This repeats multiple times during the short, with Daffy trying different ploys to get Elmer to shoot Bugs, but Bugs continues to outwit him. After Daffy is shot for the third time, he walks away. Elmer tries to shoot him, but no more shells come out of his gun. Thrilled, Daffy comes back and grabs Elmer's gun to make sure, only to be shot with the last shell.
Daffy then sees a sign that Bugs has nailed to a tree saying "Duck Season Open". As he sees Elmer approaching, he disguises himself as Bugs, telling him that it's duck season. Bugs appears disguised as Daffy, complete with webbed feet and fake bill, and asks Daffy why he thinks it's duck season. Daffy points at the tree where he previously saw the "Duck Season Open" sign. However, the sign nailed to that tree now reads "Rabbit Season Open", implying that Bugs replaced the signs. Elmer, of course, shoots Daffy. After Daffy gets blasted, he goes up to Bugs and says, "You're desthpicable!" The two walk away, getting out of their costumes as Daffy rants to Bugs how despicable he is. Bugs then begins to read duck recipes from a cookbook and Daffy does the same with a rabbit recipe cookbook. Elmer tells them he's a vegetarian and only hunts for the sport of it. Outraged, Bugs gets in Elmer's face and claims "Oh, yeah? Well, there's other sports besides huntin', ya know!?" Daffy then offers to play tennis. Elmer blasts him again, then begins shooting and chases both of them all the way to the rabbit hole. Bugs comes out of his hole and accuses Elmer of "hunting rabbits with an elephant gun", suggesting Elmer shoot an elephant instead. Just as Elmer is considering it, a huge elephant appears from literally nowhere, threatens Elmer in a Joe Besser voice, "You do and I'll give you SUCH a pinch!" and preemptively pounds him into the ground before striding off.
Elmer finally loses patience and decides to take out both Bugs and Daffy. Daffy comes into the scene, disguised as a hunting dog and Bugs comes in disguised as a lady hunter. When Daffy bites Elmer, Bugs' ear reveals and Elmer sees through their disguises and threatens to finish them off.
Elmer finds the two arguing by a tree with a sign that starts with the words "Rabbit Season"; Bugs and Daffy continue to pull off the sign to alternatively reveal it is "Duck Season" or "Rabbit Season" until they hit a final sign, proclaiming it to be "Elmer Season". With the roles reversed, Elmer gets a taste of his own medicine and starts running, avoiding gunshots whilst Bugs and Daffy, dressed as hunters, stalk him. Bugs says "Be very, very quiet… we're hunting Elmers!" with Daffy imitating Elmer's laugh.
- Along with its two sequels, the versions of this cartoon shown on ABC in the 1980s and 1990s, CBS in the 1980s, the syndicated and Fox network versions of Merrie Melodies Starring Bugs Bunny & Friends in the 1990s, and Kids' WB! in the 1990s cut multiple scenes of Elmer shooting Daffy. While the versions shown on ABC and both versions of Merrie Melodies Starring Bugs Bunny & Friends replaced the actual shots of Elmer firing at Daffy's head with a still shot of Bugs Bunny looking off-screen (or, in the case of the end of "Rabbit Seasoning", freeze-framed on the shot of the cabin when Elmer and Daffy go inside) and had the audio play normally, the versions shown on CBS and Kids WB! spliced out any and all scenes (both visual and audio) of Daffy getting shot, which made "Duck! Rabbit, Duck!" particularly choppy and incoherent.
- On Nickelodeon's Looney Tunes on Nickelodeon compilation show, the gun scenes for "Rabbit Seasoning" and "Duck! Rabbit, Duck!" were left uncensored, but "Rabbit Fire" was edited to remove the "No more buwwets" gag (Elmer tries to shoot at Daffy and thinks he's run out of bullets. Bugs tells Daffy this, Daffy takes the shotgun, stares down its barrel, and gets shot).
- The working title was "What's Up, Duck?"
- This marks the first time Bugs and Daffy were paired in a Looney Tune or Merrie Melodie with Elmer Fudd.
- This is the first cartoon of "The Hunting Trilogy" starring Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd.
- This cartoon as well as a small scene from "Rabbit Seasoning" were used in The Bugs Bunny Road-Runner Movie. When introducing this short, Bugs states he sometimes feels that the world's population is full of people out to get him and/or Daffy, making an example of how Elmer Fudd, like other sportsman, is never satisfied unless he's protecting others by shooting dangerous forest animals.
- Footage from this cartoon made up most of the first quarter in The Big Game XXIX: Bugs Vs. Daffy. The short itself also appeared as one of the "game films" in the pregame show leading up to the game itself.
- This was the only cartoon in the "Hunter's trilogy" to be reissued. The other two, Rabbit Seasoning, and "Duck! Rabbit, Duck!" were not reissued and survive with their original opening and ending Color Rings.
- This was the only cartoon in the trilogy where Daffy wins out against Elmer. The other two have Bugs as the sole winner, while Daffy and Elmer were the losers.
- When Elmer blushes when seeing Bugs disguised as a lady, when Daffy attempts to bite Elmer, his gun is then missing. He steals Bugs' gun after the plan backfires.
- In Looney Tunes: Cartoon Conductor, the music is "Symphony No. 5" by Ludwig van Beethoven for rhythmic reasons.
- This is the only paired-together cartoon with Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd to be blue ribbon reissued.
- While this cartoon was restored to DVD and Blu-ray, it was one of the cartoons that is in low-pitched, as the 1998 dubbed version audio is being used for the soundtrack. This cartoon has not had its pitch corrected since.
- The part where Bugs and Daffy argue with the Rabbit Season/Duck Season signs is used in two Cartoon Network bumpers during the Powerhouse era, the era in which Cartoon Network's programming consisted of classic theatrical shorts from Warner Bros., MGM, Hanna-Barbera, and Fleischer Studios, with the Warner Bros. shorts being most frequent, so called because the famous snippet from Raymond Scott's "Powerhouse" plays in bumpers and promos:
- In one, the scene plays as normal, until they hit a final sign, proclaiming it to be the Cartoon Network logo (the Elmer Season sign is replaced using digital editing). The bumper fades-out once Bugs and Daffy stare at Elmer.
- In another, the Rabbit Season/Duck Season signs are replaced by "The Daffy and Bugs Show" and "The Bugs and Daffy Show" (courtesy of digital editing) and Bugs and Daffy's lines are re-dubbed (most likely voiced by Jeff Bergman) where Daffy argues "Daffy and Bugs!" and Bugs argues "Bugs and Daffy!" Bugs and Daffy continue to pull off the sign to alternatively reveal it is "The Bugs and Daffy Show" or "The Daffy and Bugs Show" until they hit a final sign, proclaiming it to be "The Elmer Show! Also Starring A Rabbit And A Duck" (again the Elmer Season sign is replaced using digital editing). The tables turned, Bugs and Daffy stare at Elmer, then it cuts away to a promo of Bugs 'n' Daffy.
- The film marks a significant change in Daffy's style, away from the "screwball" and toward the "foil" for Bugs' jokes. However this is the only one of the hunting trilogy where they attempt to work together to rid themselves of Elmer.
- Daffy’s “You’re despicable” catchphrase makes its debut.
- This cartoon was shown in theatres with Goodbye, My Fancy during its original release.
- The elephant makes a cameo during the "Toon Meeting" scene in Space Jam.
- The sign gag became a meme in 2011.
- When shown on Cartoon Network and Boomerang, this short plays in PAL audio.
- The part where Elmer says "Be vewy, vewy quiet!" was used in the montage trailer for Warner Bros.' 75th anniversary in 1998.
- The Censored Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies Page: Q-R http://www.intanibase.com/gac/looneytunes/censored-q-r.aspx
- Warner Bros. 75th Anniversary Montage (1998) (4K) (5.1) - FT Depot