Our First Egg!

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Kit update, rabbits in the heat of summer

Kit update:
Out of Pumpkin and Winchester's first litter together, 6 juniors are left. We have 3 does and 3 bucks. We have not noticed any disqualifications (no white toenails, no "less energetic" ears, good colors) for showing any of these buns. We have been a little lazy in putting them up "for sale," as we are in a vacation mindset right now.

We had a very nice family contact us from California and purchase our ermine buck and a black buck, Winter and Cedric, before we even listed them for sale.

Also, we had a BIG exciting thing happen, we brought home a very nice senior chinchilla-colored FA buck, a little over a year old, named BOONE. He is very special and beautiful. We hope to enter him into a show this fall, then breed him to a doe to get more chinchillas. I have a personal liking to the chinchilla color in angoras. It has a nice salt n pepper look to the guard hairs that I find appealing. Boone is a real sweetheart, and we were so glad to get him!

Rabbits in the heat:
We will be listing our rabbits, and posting updated pictures and information about each junior in about a week. We should probably also update the status of our senior FA: they are all shaved or plucked! Not a good time to take pictures. We decided we are done showing until fall, so they can be sufficiently in coat for the late fall/winter shows. Until then, we plan to keep the wool very cropped, so the heat is less of an issue for them. We plucked or cut all the wool off earlier this month.

We rigged up a fan and misting system in the trees near the rabbit hutches which keeps/kept them cool enough up until about 93-94 degrees. If you plan to install your own misting system for FA, then keep in mind that you want the mist to be a "heat barrier curtain" without getting them or cages wet! Otherwise you will have a wet, matted, dirty bunny in less than a day! That is about the only wool I would throw out or use only for nest boxes.

A fan is helpful, just keep it under the eaves and up near roof, pointing down, to protect from sprinklers and rain/hail storms.

Deep shade, misting, and fan systems are a must if you plan to leave your buns out in hot weather, and probably pull them in anytime it reaches over 92 degrees, as they will die from heat stroke. We are able to make it to about 93-94 degrees without pulling them inside, due to misting/fan/deep shade. I think I would define deep shade as shade that is truly never dappled with sunlight, is deep and cool, and never really sees the light of day. We also have the buns against a tall cinder wall, backed by 5' of dirt and plants, which also retains the cool longer than a wood fence, per say. This also helps keep them cool.

Some people use frozen blocks of ice or gallon water bottles for the rabbits to sit next to, but we had no luck with this. Here is our two cents: the litter pans are filled with gross pee-water at the end of the day, flies are horrible, water bottle and large blocks of ice are completely melted after about 4 hours. So, just really creates lots more work & mess, and doesn't make much of a difference in our opinion.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Pumpkin and Winchester's First Litter, 8 weeks

These kits are 8 weeks old and beautiful! We have three does (2fawn, 1 blue tort) and five bucks (2 black, 1 fawn, 1 tort, 1 ermine). They all have very good crimping to thier first coats and very good balance of guard hairs to wool.