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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a junior SF who was born last April. We bred her last month and she is due today. This morning I went out and she is pulling fur, BUT she took all the straw and fur out of her nest box and made a nest in the corner of the cage! I put it all back in and she immediately jumped in and began putting it all out again! GRRRR! Since I had to get to work, I just put a ton more straw in to cover the entire cage floor and am hoping for the best. If she can keep them alive, can I just clean out the dirty straw/hay each day? Once the kits are born, can I put them BACK in the nest box. Dang stubborn rabbit!
 

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Wait... and be vigilant. She's a first time momma and doesn't know what the nest box is for. Once she finishes kindling, move the kits, nest and all, into the box. Chances are excellent that she will care for them there. It should help to put the box where the nest is now... unless it is her potty corner.

This is pretty common. I know it's tough when you work away from home and can't be there to check as often as you would like to... but if you can get them into the nest box as soon as you get home, all will likely go smoothy after that. Bunnies don't read our rule books... and I doubt if they consciously remember from their own infancy what a nest box is. They work from instinct... build a nice nest... and many of them happen to recognize the nest box as a good, safe, protected place. But not all of them.

If the transfer works this time, she will almost certainly use the box the next time she kindles. They are capable of learning from experience.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you so much; I will try it!
Joan
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Well, I'm glad I bedded the whole cage. When I got home from work, she had 7 kits in a pile in one corner of the cage, but some wire exposed. They were definitely cold. I got them all bedded down in the nest box and covered with fur, and I hope they make it. Two looked gray, not black. Does that mean they might be blues?
 

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Did you put the box where she had the babies? For some reason she chose that particular spot and you should try to keep the nest there, IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well, she bedded them in the corner RIGHT in front of her feeder, so I moved the nest box just a tad back so she could get in and eat, BUT I put the kits in the corner of the nest box closest to that corner....crossing my fingers and hoping for the best. If she is successful, she'll be my 5th SF to kindle! One more to go (if she's bred-nest box in today) and then all 6 of my does will have kindled. After this, I'll try to space things out a bit.
 

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How's your kits this morning Jcran?
Your scenario was exactly what my doe did a couple weeks ago,,, to the letter..
After she was finished kitting,, I put them in the nest box and before going to bed,, I checked on her,,,she was in the box with them and left her alone.
I should have brought them in that night ,,, but I didn't,, and they froze..
Wishing you better luck..
Gary H.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Well, this morning the fur was still moving but she jumps in and out of the nest box a lot more than I'd like...tomorrow is Veterans Day so I'll check the box in the morning.
 

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Have you checked for any "non" moving fur? I've only spotted my doe, once in 5 litters being in the nest. you should feel fortunate...
Gary H.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
There is a fair amount of flattened fur in the box, but then a big fluffy pile in the corner where the kits are. It always seems like there can be no more than one or two kits under there, but when I check there are more(at least in the other nest boxes)! They grow so darned fast! On Saturday when we have our 4-H rabbit meeting, we'll clean out nest boxes and replace with clean straw and the kids can see the 10 day old kits, the 3 and 4 week old kits, and the weaners. It will be nice for them to see how big they get in just a few weeks! I know, I know, we'll clean hands well between each litter. That brings me to my last question...will antibacterial gel be enough or will the smell of that be too astringent? My daughter thought mild hand soap and then rub our dry hands in the straw to get any smell out...I didn't think the rabbits would be too picky.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
7 live kits still; yippee so far. The doe IS still spending a lot of time in the box, but seems to sit to the side. It is icky and raining raining raining. I worry sometimes that our tarp and plastic greenhouse panel covered cages would be on one of those rescue shows. The rabbits are in cages up on 2x4s on sawhorses, well protected from the rain and varmints, under the apple trees in our orchard, but we look a little hillbilly-ish. My brother, an electrician, stopped by today and thank god, his house building job is FINALLY ending. He now has time to build my rabbitry! He is going to build me a 12 x 20 foot open shed with a wide overhang and we'll suspend the cages from the rafters. We're going to use all recycled redwood from the 130-year old Victorian that my brother helped rebuild(second floor burned 1 1/2 year back from a tenant fire). The builder kept throwing old-growth lumber into the dumpster and then my brother would crawl in and haul it out at the end of each work day. The contractor finally asked him if he wanted all of it. So my brother has some incredible lumber for my shed. He suggested using recycled pond liner for roll-up/roll-down sides instead of hard sided walls. That way, in the summer, they can have a lot of circulating air and good rain protection in the winter. He is going to start next week and so HOPEFULLY we'll have a functioning state-of-the-art (ok, at least a shed) rabbitry for our buns by the end of Thanksgiving week.
 

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Glad to see your kits doing well,,,
Lets talk about this "Old Growth lumber"..
Do you realize the value of that??? You can't buy Old growth lumber ''
If you were to take that and build a nice dining room table with it,,, shellac it with several coats,,, you could sell that table for a thousand dollars..
Still want to build your rabbitry with that wood??
Gary H.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Glad to see your kits doing well,,,
Lets talk about this "Old Growth lumber"..
Do you realize the value of that??? You can't buy Old growth lumber ''
If you were to take that and build a nice dining room table with it,,, shellac it with several coats,,, you could sell that table for a thousand dollars..
Still want to build your rabbitry with that wood??
Gary H.
I'll talk to my brother! I do know there are a lot of nails (square ones!)in it and irregulare shapes and lengths due to the sawzall cutting them out of the house when the second floor was dismantled. From the newspaper clippings that were pulled from the walls (insulation? backing for wallpaper?), the house seems to have been built in 1873ish. However, he is an electrician, not a true woodworker and golly gee, I am from the measure once and cut a zillion times school of woodworking. If I built the rabbitry, it would definitely be from the Edward Gorey school of thought.
 

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Marshloft has a good point, Joan. I hate the thought of all that "historic" wood going to make rabbit facilities. Maybe have a go at selling some of it at least... I'll bet you'd have enough cash to build a modern bunny palace and to feed the buns for a long time to come. And the wood would be saved for those of us who care about heritage matters.
 

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I just wanted to congadulate u on ur litter, Im geting my trio of SF the end of this month Im so excited. I am really wanting to find a blue one of these days if anyone knows of blues near or around KS.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Woo hippity-hoo! Today, when I fed at first light, there was fur off some of the litter. One of the kits is definitely GRAY (or blue-try explaining THAT to an 8 year old!). So I've got blue in that line. How do I figure out who's carrying the gene. Breed mom to different daddy? Or is it recessive so both have to have a little bit o' it?
 

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They both carry it, since you got a blue. Some of the blacks in the litter may also carry it, you'd have to test breed them to see if they did by breeding them to a blue, you could breed them to a carrier, but you may or may not get any blues.

I bred my blue carrying doe to my Blue SF, I'm hoping to have something decent to show at Nationals in April. I REALLY wanted to breed her to my blue carrying black I sold at convention, but naturally, she would not breed with him before he left!
 
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