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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Cheating Nature

I'm trying to cheat Mother Nature.

In the winter, it's harder to get rabbits bred. It's cold, there are less hours of daylight and the girls just kind of shut off until Spring.

Nope, not acceptable.

I have several does I HAVE to get started. I have several does that now I FINALLY got them started, I don't want to lose that progress to 3-4 months of inactivity.

So, my only option is to very carefully try to cheat Mother Nature.

Right now, I have a large carrier in the house, with four does. Two are mini lops, one is a holland and one is a wooley. Of these four, only one is actually started. Oh joy.

The girls are comfortable, especially the two smaller breeds. Even the mini loppers have room to turn around in their holes, and everyone will get at least a short amount of time each evening to stretch their legs.

I'm lacing their water with apple cider vinegar, which didn't really help last time, but can't really hurt either.

I'm keeping them in the living room, where they'll have more light, especially since our turtle has a UV bulb in his heat lamp. Yayy for simulated Daylight!

Our 10 day forecast is calling for weather from 50 degrees (like today) all the way up to 69 degrees. WAIT! I thought I was in the mountains in December?! Where is my snow mountain folks?! However this lull in cold is GREAT for me, it means I'll be able to transition the does back to outside with very few problems. We keep the house about 70 degrees as it is! That's part of the reason I chose this week to move everyone inside. I don't relish the thought of getting them used to 70 degrees, then throwing them in to the 30 degree rabbitry. It's always best to have them come in to a similar kind of temperature, and then leave again the same way. Of course it's not as big of a deal if you're bringing bucks in to breed the does, then go back outside, or mothers in to feed their kits, because they aren't getting as much time to acclimate.

Once we get down to the cold weather, I'm going to have a harder time being tricky. We've put brighter light bulbs into the rabbity, and we're leaving the lights on in the evenings (only when we are home!) to try to get the girls in the mood. I hope something works, I definitely have a few I don't want sitting for a long period of time! Although I don't like the idea of having 5-6 rabbits living in the house all winter either- then having babies-eeek! Too many bunnies!

I've got a few girls due soon- wish me luck! Two are hollands and one is a mini lop. All three have had babies before, but the mini lop's first litter didn't make it, one of the hollands had the same problem, and this will be my first litter out of the 3rd doe.

Keep's Rabbitry

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