Mink Hollow Rabbitry Blog

Permanent link: http://bit.ly/mhr-blog

In an effort to move away from Facebook more, I am starting a blog. I will post things here that I would normally share on the farm page on FaceBook.

—- watch this space for more —–

I know I said I'd introduce the horses today, but I realized that it's been a few days since we checked litters, so that's what we are doing today.

PLEASE STAY TUNED. There was a glitch in the uploading so I have to re-do it.

Cobalt's kids are just starting to venture out of the nest.
They are starting to try and hop, but aren't very good at it yet.
Cobalt's kids are the same age as Cancon's but there are 10 here (Cancon had 6), so they are somewhat smaller.

These guys are almost 3 weeks old now.

They were born March 12.
They are really starting to get hoppy.
It turns out, the shelves come in really handy when the babies get this age.
For about another week, mom will easily be able to get away from them simply by jumping up on the shelf.
Once they start wandering around, they also start chasing mom for extra helpings of milk.
Most moms don't like that so they can get some peace by being out of the way.

Choir is the mom with the chocolate babies.

Windy is our girl who had 12 babies.
She's lost one so we're down to 11.
The rest look just fine though.

I know I say Cerise in the video, but I misspoke.
These are actually Cebreez's babies.
Sorry for the confusion.

We finally have some pictures of Conina's kids.
They look fine!

Sadly, Cerise had 11 babies, but has lost 2, so she's down to 9.

The 9 that are there look good!

2020/04/01 11:35 · becker

This morning was Sprouts day again.
They do really LOVE their sprouts.

First up, our favorite Mink Hollow Family - Maggie and the kids!

Next, we have 4 young roommates sharing a place.
They are in one of my three-level cages.
This is a picture of the cage before the girls moved in.
It is 4' wide, 2' deep, and 3' high. The wire part is made of dog ex-pen panels. It has a solid bottom which gets a new coat of paint every time it gets new tenants. It has 2 different platforms above the “downstairs”. They can jump onto the lower platform. The upper one has a ramp leading from the first platform and a kind of railing. The ramp is there because I don't want the buns trying to jump from the other platform, and the railing is so no-one accidentally falls off. That said, the railing is made of 1×4 plank and the buns just LOVE to chew it. I've already replaced one of the railings because it got chewed down. Oh well, it's good for their teeth.

These four girls are from 3 different litters.
They are taking some time to grow up.
They were born at the end of December and start of January, so they are now 3 months old.

Two are sisters: Chloe (broken chocolate otter) and Cutie (black). Choir is their mom and Buzz Lightyear is their dad.

The two tris are half-sisters. They have the same dad: Buddy.
The darker one is Dazzle. Cinnabun (aka Cindy) is her mom. Dazzle is a black-orange tri.
The lighter one is Crayola. Her mom is Claire. Crayola is a blue-cream tri.

And now for a change of pace we have some of the other cast members.
The birds love sprouts too.
They heard me coming and came out to see what I had for them.
For a moment there, they were all in a row.
But not for long.
Life's like that.

Last for today, but certainly not least, we have Odin and Freya, who are both Sarplaninac livestock guardian dogs.
They are both purebred.
Odin is Freya's uncle.
THEY are the reason my birds and rabbits stay safe. <3 <3 <3

Maybe tomorrow we can meet the equines.

2020/03/31 16:28 · becker

While I clean more often when they need it, I always clean everyone on Mondays.
Today is Monday.
(I know this post is dated Tuesday, but I took the videos yesterday, which WAS Monday.)

Once everyone is clean, they all get a treat - sprouts, mixed seeds and dried fruits, or hay.

Today they got hay.
This is Maggie and Trigger's DBJ litter enjoying their hay.

Next up are my two oldest rabbits: Heckle on the left, and Versace on the right.
They are both semi-retired, that means that they mostly get to just hang around, munch goodies, and play with their toys. Sometimes they get to run around in the rabbitry, but only one at a time. Rabbits can be quite territorial and I don't want them to fight.
Heckle is almost 4 and Versace turned 5 in January.

Finally, we have a shot of some of my “stackers” - they are all wire cages, most of which have litter pans, and all of which have toys.
Everyone got hay today.
Cloak, who is the dude in the lower right cage doesn't have a hay rack yet because I don't have the panel. Instead of getting his hay in his hay rack like the others, he gets it in his cage. He clearly likes that. I actually don't because he always ends up wasting most of it by digging in it and jumping around on it. At least half of the hay I give him ends up falling through the wire bottom. :-P

2020/03/31 15:17 · becker

Time for an update on the seven litters that were born 3 days ago. Everyone's doing fine! Growing fur, and mostly growing fat.

Choir had 10 - all look good.

There are for sure some chocolates in there! Looks like 2 solid chocolates and one chocolate otter. The rest are 'self' black and black otters.
You can tell which are the selfs and which are the otters by the colour of their bellies and inside their ears.
Pink ears and bellies means they are otters.
Mom is a black otter and dad is black.
In order for the chocolates to appear, BOTH parents have to be carrying the gene for chocolate.
Chocolate is recessive to black.

In the video, you can see how they “POP” and hear the little noises they make. Baby bunnies are usually fed only once a day, so that means it's REALLY important to catch Mom when she goes into the nest to feed them.
Unlike many other animals, does do not lie down to feed their babies. Instead, they stand over them. It's the baby's job to catch a nipple as fast as possible, for she will only stand there for a few minutes. Right now they are still deaf and blind, so when they feel something that COULD be Mom (like my hand), they will jump and pop open their mouths to try and catch a nipple.

Cindy has 7. You can see how fat their bellies are. That's a good sign!
In the video below you can probably count 6 fairly easily.
If you look closely, you should be able to find the 7th under the pile (top right of the video).

Windy has a BIG litter - 12.
A couple look like they aren't getting quite as much milk as the others.
Most rabbits only feed their babies once a day. We'll have to wait and see - I've had does raise a dozen or more before.
Windy is a broken chocolate, and Andy is a broken Sable.
Windy has a BIG litter of 12.
4 broken, 8 black(?).
They don't all look the same shade of black, so we'll have to wait longer to find out for sure.

Tink's 9 babies are looking good.
I don't have video of them.
I'll try and get some for the next update.
Some of these look like they will be sables.
Sable babies go through some really cool colour changes as they grow.
Initially, they look kind of blue.
When the fur comes in, it is often silvery (I have NO idea what's going on with the greenish one!)
A little older still, and the fur starts to look frosty-tipped, as hairs come out darker at the roots.
Eventually, their colour will look like Burmese cats.

Stay tuned….

Cebreez has the smallest litter, with only 4.
They look pretty fat though, and it looks like two of them might be tris.

No video of these guys either - my battery was running low on my camera.

I don't have any new pictures of this litter.
She made her nest beside the nestbox in the very back corner of her cage.
Any time I try to look at them, she jumps into the nest and hovers over them.

We'll just have to wait.

Cerise has 11, as it turns out. She's a big doe so should be able to manage fine with that many.
She also had her babies beside the nestbox.
She seems to like sitting in her nestbox BESIDE her kids.
I've left the nestbox in place because, well, she likes sitting in it and isn't messing it up, but also because the box helps to keep the nest she did make in place.

When they are really small, babies that end up out of the nest rarely find their way back in. In nature, their nests are usually underground, and the ways out of the nest are up. That means that any babies that end up out of the nest will naturally fall back in. Nests are usually on the same level as everything else in a rabbitry, so most of us keep an eye out for babies out of the nest and just put them back in when we find them.

2020/03/30 18:10 · becker

There's more commentary on these videos on YouTube.

2020/03/29 18:47 · becker
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