Sunny also gave birth over the weekend with a healthy litter popping out some time after dusk Sunday evening. We haven't managed to get good photos yet, but will have some for Thursday. Her litter has 8 living kits, and one was still born. It was a very strange thing for us to find because it was dead when we located it. It had no bones, was misshapen, its skin was off and strange, it was covered in blood, and actually larger and heavier than any of the living kits. Michelle Chandler said that she has encountered that sort of stillborn before so we aren't too concerned.
Dirt Bags that we got at Here we Grow in Hadley MA. Given that we were getting inexpensive herbs which we don't know how to fully maintain, we went with pots that made it easier. The gentleman at Here we Grow recommended the Dirt Bags because they prevent (or at least ameliorate) root binding which can be the bane of pot growing.
Finally before we get to the weights of the babies, we saw our first Luna Moth for the season! We love having these huge, beautiful moths at our house. Not only are they a beautiful creature they are an indication of a healthy eco-system. While they aren't uncommon they tend not to do well where any sort of pesticide has been applied recently.
Baby Weight Charts
5/03 5/04 5/05 5/06 5/06 5/07 5/08 5/09 5/10 5/11 5/12 5/13 5/14 5/15
1: 71 80 89 87 Weights 103 113 125 133 148 158 158 167 180
2: 67 75 80 84 At 91 110 119 116 133 144 153 158 178
3: 65 73 77 84 Death 91 101 110 113 123 130 129 156 175
4: 65 66 68 75 88 100 106 110 112 121 128 140 163
5: 54 56 58 62 75 100 103 102 109 110 110 132 145
6: 54 52 55 60 62 70 71 78 90 106 101 105 116
7: 52 49 50 52 46
8: 49 48 46 50 43
Dawn's litter is doing well. The bobble in weights on the 13th I think is likely due to me taking weights before they ate in the morning. It is hard for me to really be able to affect whether I weigh before or after feeding because I have a set departure time in the morning.It does strongly affect the weights of the babies when I do weigh them. The babies are always weighed between 8:00 and 8:30 in the morning each day. Overall I am pleased with how well they are doing. As of Thursday I am going to be linking to a Google Docs spreadsheet for the weight chart for Dawn's litter. The chart here is getting unwieldy to format since Blogger doesn't have a table function I've been able to locate.
1: 65 65
2: 60 60
3: 57 58
4: 56 58
5: 55 58
6: 55 57
7: 53 56
8: 47 49
Sunny's litter is extremely consistent in weight range compared to Dawn's. It has also been easier for me to be able to tell if the babies have been fed compared to the first few days with Dawn's. Some of that I'm sure is me gaining experience, some of it was that when we found Sunny's babies they were clearly fed. When I handled and weighed Sunny's litter this morning I know they hadn't been fed yet. Getting weights for Sunny's litter is also harder than with Dawn because bribery or no, Sunny is sitting and watching me the whole time, carefully. If her babies start squeaking she comes over. So far she hasn't threatened me yet but she clearly does not appreciate what I am doing. Californians are known for being some of the best mothers of all rabbits, and many if not most meat breeds have bred in Californians recently for the mothering and large litters. That said they are not known for good temperament compared to others so I am a little wary. I have rarely been bitten by any animal, but that isn't due to lack of interaction, or having only friendly animals. It is because of being wary and watching for signs that the animal is going to strike before it happens, and avoiding those actions in the future.