Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Baby bunnies growing up!

Well, Godiva and family moved back to the barn Sunday afternoon. As I was still getting over the bronchitis, I was moving a little slower than normal, but I decided it was time. As you can see, the babies are growing.
They now have hair and as of today are 12 days old today. They have not yet opened their eyes, but I expect that to happen any time now! They are getting so big! And wiggly! Godiva stills seems a bit clueless about the whole mothering thing. I gave her 24 hours and checked to see if it looked like she was nursing them, which she evidently was not, so.....each evening I go out to the barn to provide a little "encouragement" (read I put her in the nest box so those babies can eat). I am also still having to take care of their toileting needs! I am looking forward to that day that they can attend to their own "toilette" independently! I have been advised that when the babies are a bit bigger that I should breed her one more time this season. The only thing will be finding homes for the babies when they are weaned. Any of my fiber artists friends in the market for a french angora bunny? There's nothing like blending a little angora in with other favorite? Alpaca and angora (about a 90/10% blend) is fabulous!
The babies are too small to figure you yet which are boys and which are girls. One is jet black, one is chocolate brown (like Godiva) and the other three are called "Broken Black" which is basically black and white. The runt of the litter is about 2/3rds the size of the largest babies, which are the black and brown. As they get bigger, I will try and get pictures of the individuals, so you guys can start thinking about names!
Remember to visit the website often to see what else I am up to!
Have a blessed day!

Monday, April 20, 2009

So...many of you have heard of "Baby Mama"? Meet "Bunny Mama". This is Lady Godiva {so named because 1.) she is a Chocolate bunny and I adore Godiva Chocolate, and 2.) she (normally) has long flowing hair. } She is suffering the effects of a really bad haircut, because when an angora has babies, it is most prudent to cut off the aforementioned long flowing hair, so that the babies don't get all tangled in the hair.
Anyway, I expected her to kindle (that's what it's called when Bunny Mama has her babies) on Saturday or so, but when I got home on Friday night, she was in the process. Unfortunately, Godiva is a first time parent, so she really didn't understand that the nice box in her cage was there for her to pull some nice soft hair and create a cozy nest for her little bundles of joy. She was having them on the wire. And they were very cold, but still moving save one poor little bunny that was already dead. I quickly gathered them up and made a nest for them. 20 or 30 minutes later I went back to the barn and discovered another little guy on the wire. So I took both mama and baby back to the house where I could watch for any more little surprises and everyone (including me) could stay warm and cozy.
All told, we got 5 out of 6 babies, and this is them tonight. So far, with a little help from me (Bunny Nanny), Mama is learning how to care for her babies. She will let them nurse with a little encouragement. They are fat and sassy and seem to be thriving so far. Lucky for me, bunnies only nurse once or twice a day, so after my 10 hours at work all day and my 1 1/2 hour commute, I can still make sure that the babies are being well nourished. Another interesting fact I have learned is that baby bunnies evidently don't go to the bathroom without their mama's licking their little bottoms. It seems this stimulates them and allows Mama to keep the next clean. Mama isn't doing this. Before you ask, no, I am not either...not really. A little warm moist cosmetic wipe is the closest thing I can provide! There are 3 spotted babies, one solid black and one lovely silver grey. When they get a little bigger, I will likely need a little help naming them...hopefully you guys can help! I may have to think about a naming contest or something. Maybe the grand prize could be a skein of handspun angora yarn?!?!?!
I will keep posting updates as the babies get bigger. Hope you are all well and enjoying spring!