“There’s a drive in me that won’t allow me to do certain things that are easy.” – Johnny Depp

I am not very happy with Ginger at the moment.

Yesterday started out as a good day.  My female rabbit, Ginger, started to get ready to give birth to her litter of bunnies.  I know she was ready as she had pulled out her fur to make a nest for her little ones.  I added some straw to help with additional building material in endeavour.  I then left her to it and went about my day, busy to the extent that I actually forgot to check on her till 7pm, when I was about to go to a friend’s house where we meet every week or so to discuss preparedness and to watch a permaculture DVD.  I went out and I found that 6 bunnies were born, yet they were all dead.  I don’t know what killed them, or how they died.  I was so disappointed!

It was a bit of a cold day, a bit of a change from the last few weeks of warmth, and it did rain a lot on the late morning.  Still, I don’t know why they died.  When things like this happen you really question the value of the work you put in to the property and the worth of the whole plan.

A very sad sight, these guys never had a chance.

Another problem occurred during the night.  I have a strand of electric wire around my garden bed, to prevent any nocturnal guests from taking a walk amongst my plants and trees.  I failed to turn it on and it seems that a Possum climbed into by garden, broke at least 8 branches of several trees, ate all the leaves off the bottom of a couple of trees, and finally ate the one Plum which I had grown.  I had nurtured this one Plum for months, it was only days away from being ready to eat.  I am so annoyed at this turn of events, losing a litter of bunnies and my only plum.

You can see the lower branches have been denuded and a couple of broken branches. The top looks worse.

I have taken the broken branches and potted them into a large garden pot, in the hope that they will grow roots and I can replant them.  I have never had any success with this method (although Kitty does, she just throws the branches in a jar of water, she doesn’t change the water, and two months later she has roots growing from the branch).

On a positive note, I posted a new Instructable a couple of days ago… I forgot to mention it here.  It is on repairing Wooden Framed windows.  I broke a window while I was cutting some grass on my lawnmower (a stone shot out and broke the window).  I took the opportunity to create an Instructable on how to repair this.

3 Replies to ““There’s a drive in me that won’t allow me to do certain things that are easy.” – Johnny Depp”

  1. Hi there,

    I live on a small-holding in South Africa, and am also breeding rabbits.

    I stumbled upon your blog looking for other people’s experience with breeding rabbits.

    Do you use the meat as well or only the skins? Have you been successful with tanning the skins? I am still deciding whether I should use the skins and what I can use them for.

    As for you dead kits, she may have had still-borns. My one doe aborted a whole litter, they were still in the very early stage of development. I think it was stress that caused her to abort. My brother who also breeds has often come out to find the litter due was born dead. It is a very difficult thing to deal with as there is so little one can do to prevent it. Ours are colony-raised which brings in its own pros and cons.

    I had the misfortune of finding a whole litter of 9 out of the nest box at 1 week old, dead from the cold, I was able to save two of the 9 but they died days later. It is such a horrible thing to see.

    I have also lost a litter due to 2 of my does fighting over nest boxes.

    I am looking forward to reading more about your bunny escapades.

    1. Hi Tamaryn,
      thanks for the comment.
      I use the Rabbits mostly for meat. The hides are something I am trying to get experience in working, both curing and making something useful. I thought one useful thing to make might be some fur lined shoes/boots. To keep my feet warm on a cold night.

      In relation to the dead kits, I am sure that I saw them alive, yet it is possible that I am not remembering properly.

      I just wrote a post about all four adults escaping, and I have now managed to catch two… Ginger and Magic Babe. The male is no where to be seen, and I spotted the black and white female this evening, but my dog scared it away. I will try to catch her later.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *