|The kits are moving around on their own.|
The second thing we learned, once a litter has gotten wet the chances of them making it are very slim. If we are going to give them the best shot we can we need to get them somewhere warmer than outside. To that end when I'm building the coop I'm building it to include rabbit hutches along one wall. That way if we breed and sudden crazy weather happens we can move the moms inside. It also means we can keep the bucks there in the summer so they don't get heat sterility again. It isn't something we could have done this time, but hopefully it is something we can prevent in the future.
|Twilight isn't too happy about it.|
The fourth is that sometimes we can't make do with what we can afford, we really do need to do it right. Roofing is an example of that. If her hutch had a proper roof on it rather than plywood which usually works fine, she and her kits would have been fine. We might have lost one or two more but we wouldn't have lost all ten of them.
|But they do go back in their nest on their own.|
Speaking of Halley and Comet, we had our first escaped rabbit on Friday morning. In an odd way it was a positive thing, and cheered me up. How can an escaped rabbit running free in the woods behind her hutch be a good thing? Well, I managed to catch her within 30 minutes using no traps, and never running. In fact, she came up to me. This was the result of socializing our rabbits every day. I figured out within seconds that standing up fully scared Halley, I suspect because she isn't used to seeing me from that angle. Once I realized that wouldn't work I discovered that I can in fact still duck walk despite being ten years older than last time I did much of it. I reasoned that would put me at about the level she is used to. I duck walked around after her for half an hour, and every 5 minutes or so she came over and nudged my hand with her nose to check in, just like we do every morning. The sixth time she came close enough that I could reach out and grab her safely. She's a bit wary of me at the moment, but still comes up every morning when I feed them to nose me, so I think we're ok.
So it was a hard week for us, but at least we know how we are raising the rabbits ends up with them happy enough with us to come check in even when there's a fascinating world out there for them to look at.