crazy thing happened to the newborns

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by lonelyfarmgirl, Jul 2, 2006.

  1. lonelyfarmgirl

    lonelyfarmgirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    ok, one of my does had babies all over the ground (7). My rabbits are in a 20x20 open ground pen, with a warren dug under the mini barn. So 6 were alive, and one was dead. The dead one had fly eggs in its mouth and armpits. Upon further investigation, I found 5 of the six live ones had small chunks of fly eggs on them too. Weird, but we picked them all clean and bedded them with mom in a proper ground nest. The 5 were all white, and the one with no fly eggs had black speckles. Ok so, the next night we had a terrible storm, and everything flooded and two of the white babies drowned. :Bawling:
    So... we cleaned up the mess, the scorching sun dried up the soil, and the nest was moved to higher ground. So, the next day, we discovered the remaining three white babies had so many fly eggs on them that they looked like they had been rolled in butter. We spent hours picking them clean, and the next day, they were all three dead. One of them had a burst abdomen, and maggots were crawling out of it. All this time, the spotted one has been fine. Now he is 10 days old, and as big as a baseball. He doesn't even have his eyes open yet. I've raised rabbits for years, and have never had something this bizarre happen. Anyone else? :help:
     
  2. Jennifer L.

    Jennifer L. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    No, but this time of year the flies can be really obnoxious. When I have newborn calves just down from the pasture and tie them outside the barn in the trees where it's nice, you have to watch them for fly eggs in the hollows around their tails. They'll get going and eat the tail area raw if you don't notice them. And that's with a baby that has some defense. Those little rabbits have no defenses for that kind of thing at all. You're doing good that you have the one left (glad it's doing well!).

    By the way, this is called Fly-strike. If you see that term, this is what they are talking about.

    Jennifer
     

  3. lonelyfarmgirl

    lonelyfarmgirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    so why were the babies attacked all over their fur, and none of the other rabbits were bothered?
     
  4. Jennifer L.

    Jennifer L. Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Because the babies are helpless and can't **** a fly away, whereas the adults can dislodge the flies. Adults can be affected, though, it's just that the babies are in a worse situation.

    Jennifer
     
  5. Terry W

    Terry W Duchess of Cynicism

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    Fly- strike is also a common result of an open wound--If you EVER find a downed animal-- be sure to thoroughly clean it and check for even the smallest of scratches. Those darn flies will lay their eggs anywhere they foind a potential food source!
     
  6. SmokedCow

    SmokedCow Well-Known Member

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    Well, i thought...and i heard that flies only eat dead tissue. Thats why some medical places use them in gang-green situtaions, cuz they only eat the dead tissue. I had this happen to some of my bun buns, only they were just getting weaned, and it was where their repoductive organs were... It was very interesting. I know Iodine kills them, so maybe..if it happends again, try that. It worth a shot
    Have a great and safe 4th!
    AJ
     
  7. CountryDreams

    CountryDreams Well-Known Member

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    I had never heard of this and I want to thank you for sharing your situation with the rest of us. I learn something new all the time around here.
     
  8. MaggieJ

    MaggieJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I appreciate the information on Fly Strike.... It is something we all need to be aware of.

    But doesn't anyone else think it odd that the speckled baby came through all this unscathed where all its white litter mates succumbed? Isn't that one heck of a co-inciidence? :shrug:
     
  9. lonelyfarmgirl

    lonelyfarmgirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    yeah, it doesn't make any sense to me. and the babies had no open wounds. go figure
     
  10. Somerhill

    Somerhill Well-Known Member

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    We've had flystrike in 4-5 Cheviot sheep over the years, and its always started in the shoulderblade area - no wound, no manure to attract flies. Could possibly have been wet wool.
    I've always used peroxide to drive the maggots out of the flesh and clean the wound. Then apply antibiotic salve, and spray surrounding area with a long-acting fly repellent. They can get very sick from the infestation, but seem to heal quickly and bounce right back once you remove the maggots.
    I suspect what happened with your bunny with maggots internally is that you missed some eggs that were laid very near or even just inside the anus, and they were able to hatch.
    What a terrible thing to happen - there is nothing more upsetting and disgusting that treating a flystruck animal. You have my sympathy.
    :Bawling:
    Lisa at Somerhill
    www.somerhillfarm.com
     
  11. lonelyfarmgirl

    lonelyfarmgirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yeah, it sucked really bad. Ive never seen flies like this. Just a couple of days ago, two of my does got into it, and one had wounds. I cleaned her up and put into a isolation pen. the next day, she was dead and her wounds were crawling with maggots. those flies killed her in less than 24hrs.
     
  12. KSALguy

    KSALguy Lost in the Wiregrass Supporter

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    hey just out of curiosity can you post pics of your warren? i like seeing how differint people have their setups and like getting ideas
     
  13. lonelyfarmgirl

    lonelyfarmgirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I can try, but I would be better to just explain. I currently live in the city, and have 1 quarter of an acre. So in the rear right corner of the yard, there is a standard minibarn. There is about 3 feet between the barn and the fence on the right, so I built a wall out of concrete blocks (just stacked) so they cant get on the right side. I sunk a couple posts to build a square about 15 by 20 out of regular 4foot chain link. the right side of the square is the minibarn, and the rear is the privacy fence. they can get behind the barn. there is about 5 feet between barn rear and privacy fence. I also put a gate in the front using the barn as the hinge post. I have a 6 x 10 x 6 chain link dog kennel in the center of the pen. it is there from a dog I had, and is to awkward to move. so I can shut rabbits in and away from the population if I need to. I have standing hutches in there against the privacy fence if I need them. I put chicken wire around the bottom of the chain link to keep the babies in. I put roofs of plastic dog houses, and halfs of plastic dog cages that the other half had broke in the past upside down on the ground for shelters from the rain. I placed several food and water bowls just scattered around. Then a few concrete blocks here and there so they can get up on something if they want. There is a mature maple growing in the pen that I let the suckers grow out of so they have shade. I have one grown male who is a jerk and currently 3 mature does. There are 6 "teens" and the one baby the flies didnt get, in a hutch with his mom. The buck dug holes under the minibarn on his own, and the does have babies under there. I dont know how many escaped before I put in the chicken wire. The 6 teens are 4 males, and 3 of them will be soup this winter. The one that gets to live is a solid white minilop. Not many of those in this area. Mostly everyone gets along, but they do squab. the buck keeps a tight ship with the young males, and escorts any person entering his domain until they leave. the does really only fight when there are babies involved. I think thats why the one that the flies killed got tore up. she may have invaded an existing litter. When it rains, the entrances under the barn flood, but I do believe there is high ground and dry holes in the center under there. Only the buck is tame enough to pick up without a chase. he is probably 5 or 6 years old. We pick alot of grass and weeds in the summer to help the food bill. I am going to plant a bunch of beets and carrots at the end of july, and try to store them over the winter to cut down on purchased food. I would love to be able to do away with it all together. I heard of one guy who feeds his rabbits alot of bread in the winter. I might try that too if I can find some grain real cheap. They would be fine and happy with plain old flour and water sourdough I am sure. Any ideas on the feed thing anyone?
    Once a month, I use a garden hoe to scrape up the bulk of the poop, and shovel it for other uses. This is the least amount of rabbits I have ever had. I am used to having 30 plus.
     
  14. turtlehead

    turtlehead Well-Known Member

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    This is an interesting (and upsetting) thread. I'm new to rabbits, having only three young does on the ground in a fenced enclosure. There are a lot of flies where the does hang out! I took DE up there this morning and sprinkled it around. Hopefully that will help keep down the flies and also fleas.

    Does anyone else use DE in their rabbits' living area?
     
  15. lonelyfarmgirl

    lonelyfarmgirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    :Bawling: terrible thing!... this morning I found my stud buck dead. He looked like he had been fighting, but the wounds were not life threatening. I guess wounded, 95 degrees, and 6 years old took its toll. :Bawling: Does anyone have a minilop buck they would like to donate?