Finally, for the first time since mid-February, we have popples! For those of you who might not be familiar with the RabbitTalk forum at http://rabbittalk.com, a popple is a babby bunny. Someone on another forum observed that baby rabbits “pop” (make little jumps) like popcorn, and the nickname “popples” was born. It stuck at RabbitTalk, and we routinely refer to baby rabbits as popples, even though the proper name for them is kits.
Anyway, here we are, trying to raise meat rabbits and be self-sufficient and all, and we haven’t had a litter of rabbits since February? What’s up with that?
Right when the litter Pearl had in February was 10 weeks old, we moved. Then my husband Shay started looking for a job, and we started building a rabbitry. We completed the rabbitry and moved the bunnies in. Shay continued looking for a job, and we didn’t get around to butchering our first batch of rabbits until they were 24 weeks old.
We mated Pearl to Thumper again, but it had been so long that she was unwilling, and she didn’t have any babies. We tried again, and Pearl was a little more cooperative, but it had been so hot that Thumper went heat sterile. So this is why we had all this delay.
But finally, FINALLY, we have baby bunnies again!
Rabbit does aren’t always good mothers the first time around, but Pearl had been perfect. So I was hoping that Squeak, who by this time had reached maturity, would be a good mother right from the start as well. I have not been disappointed! She had 6, all alive, active, and healthy, and just as squeaky as Squeak had been as a popple, which is where she got her name. She had them in the nestbox, in a nice nest of hay and lots of fur that she had pulled.
Pearl’s first litter (of which Squeak was one) was 8, so I was crossing my fingers for 8 again. She had six. But that’s okay. We have 12 baby bunnies! Pearl again made a marvelous nest with an explosion of white fur in it. Her babies are so spoiled with that thick fluff she gave them! They need it, too… it went to freezing last night, and should get close again tonight.
It’s good to be back on track again.