We're a family on a 1 acre homestead in Central Florida. We're commited to raising our children in the Love of God and raising plants and animals in sustainable agriculture to feed them.
Saturday, July 9, 2011
The Rabbit operation expands
The drama a 3-lb rabbit can produce is astounding.
As previously posted, Mona had babies which fell out of pen #1 because she had them outside of nestbox #2. We got them back into nestbox #2 which stayed inside pen #1. Eventually 2 of the 5 died but not by foul play, or at least not what we can tell.
Then all 3 babies were soon climbing out of nestbox #2. We happened to be right there to witness it... and watch them climb/fall right out of pen #1. One poor bunny fell right into the poop collection pan that also held rainwater. Husbandman heard the splash, fished it out and cleaned it up.
To fix that problem, we moved Mona and all 3 babies to Brownies pen (pen #2)... obviously moving Brownie to pen#1. The kids liked that better so they could see the babies better. Here they are watching our version of Saturday morning cartoons. Even in their pajamas (in their defense it WAS still quite early). But Farmer Boy 1 was found parked there much of the day. Afterall, if he went through the trouble to haul his own little Mickey Mouse Lazyboy to the scene, you know he intends to spend some time there.
Unfortunately, when we got home from church the next day, the little tan bunny was missing. We went on a hunt and Farmer Girl was the one who figured out to check Angel's hidey holes. Yep, little tan bunny was laying there dead. It either fell through the chickenwire floor of pen #2 or Angel pulled it through. Just so happened that the day before Husbandman and a friend finished building our new 3-hole rabbit hutch. We moved it into position and moved Mona and the 2 remaining babies into one of the holes.
So here they are in pen #3. So cute and cuddley. We named the brown one Thumper, but have no name for the black one yet. One will be for Farmer Girl to show at the fair this year and the fate of the other is undecided.
But since we had 3 empty holes, we went hunting for meat rabbits. I found nothing worthwhile on Craig's List and was bemoaning such to my friends at the hardware store. They responded with, "Why not call Ms. ___? She sells meat rabbits and her sign with her phone number is posted on the wall by the feed." Sure enough, Ms. Rabbit herself lives about a mile away. I went over and was highly impressed with her level of knowledge and all she can do on a typical city lot. She gave me a great tutorial about rabbit health and sold me 2 New Zealand/Californian cross does. They were born on May 25 and will be ready to breed when the weather cools. We'll keep looking for a buck from a different gene pool with good breeding genetics.
This is Thumper looking so cute. Picture was taken this morning. They are each a good handful-sized.
Mona likes to snuggle with her little ones too. I can see why.