Monday, March 22, 2010

Baby Rabbits

We had our rabbits early as we wanted them weaned for Easter when we open up the farm. Two does obliged but the other Mopsie would not breed and so is about 2 weeks later. The top photo shows Mopsie's nest. We think there are 6 or more "kits " under the hair which the doe's pluck of their bellies to line the nest and keep their young warm.
They are born bald and blind but in 10 days have hair and by 2 weeks their eyes open . At that time they are warm and all the hair is tossed aside as shown in bottom two photos. Turns out the does only suckle once a day but look how fat those little bunnies are. Rabbits milk is 3 times richer than cows milk. At the time of writing the little ones are just starting to come out of the nest and explore their pen.

The latest thing, it must be from Europe.

Yes you are seeing what you think you are! My wife taking our rescued rabbit Mr Whiskers for a walk. He showed up around Christmas time looking for groceries and judging by how friendly he was we felt sure he had been dumped as an unwanted pet.One of the hazards of living 5 miles from the concrete jungle. So to earn his keep we thought we would let kids take him for a walk on a cat lead during our open days. So Clare said she would train him ( just as well , you wouldnt catch me doing it) and he loves it. He likes to check out the sheep in the corrals and even the cats don't bother him as he likes to chase them.

Shearing done but Lambing starts in 12 days

In the photo above you can see in the back ground I have been busy putting up the lambing "jugs" in the maternity ward. The girls are now "Bagging up" and looking rather wide. With our open days starting Easter weekend I have also made some people friendly "jugs" in the yard with easy access for children to say high and pet new born lambs.

We sheared the ewes back at the begining of March. The top three photos shows the crew , Clare skirting the fleece, and Rod shearing. Rod our shearer did a fine job and with less to do this year it was a pleasant days work and a good visit. His wife came along and went to shearing school the next week so may be next year we will be done twice as quick!