Wednesday, December 7

*kindle, the rabbit kind

Three of our does were bred about 60+ days ago, the allotted time passed, no kits (babies).  So, we put them back in the bucks den to try it again. Thirty days pass and the does did indeed kindle this time.  All three of them, unfortunately I misread one of the does and did not put her nest box back in based on some of her actions or lack of and we lost all 5 of her babies.  Anyone that says this life is simple and easy has not lived it.   Our other two does, Athena and Isis provided us with a total of 16 precious little ones. Two of Athena's died during the birthing process.

Athena started pulling out her fur several days before the babies were due and make a nice warn nest for the coming babies!

Isis is our one of our Californian does who gave birth to 12 little ones in the summer and she has done it again.  This winter she has birthed 11 babies. I was not surprised. Athena only had 5 and two died, I was surprised by this low number but grateful that I could let her foster some of Isis's babies to increase the possibilities of raising a larger number when it is all said and done. You see if a doe is bred alone and she has more than she and feed , the weakest one likely will not make it past the first few days. The runts, or smaller ones have a harder time getting their feedings in and they continue to get weaker and weaker and no longer fight to feed. So, with this in mind, Athena now has 7 babies to nurse each night and Isis has 7 as well.

As I mentioned before, this lifestyle we have chosen is refreshing, rewarding and thrilling. It really is. But I know that it too can be hard and painful. You can read, research and try to be prepared but often the education comes only through hands on experience. Some experiences you might wish to opt out of, like the recent kindling of Nirn (our other doe who lost all of her babies).  I, the keeper, failed her. I did not provide her with the nesting box because she did not show any signs of maternity. She was not doing the normal things the other does do when birthing time is arriving.  I assumed wrongly that her mating did not "take".   In the future, if any of our does were bred, they will be getting a nesting box no matter what their behavior might be.   Many of you might ask why I am effected by this since we are killing them for meat anyway. Let me just say it is a totally different situation. I am sad when any of the animals die or are needlessly killed by a predator.  I am saddened by the sickness that might cause a death in any of our animals, meat animals or providers either one.  As I said to my sister the other day, it is what we have chosen, and by faith I will walk it out. 

OH, and for those who are interested in rabbit care etc, check this out, but DON'T tell our rabbits!  Our rabbits are well cared for  but not on this level.



  1. Lynnie -- I enjoy reading your animal husbandry posts -- we raised 4-H rabbits when the children were young. Nothing quite like a little baby bunnies. I agree, if bred, a nesting box is provided regardless of the signs. It is a learning process - don't be too hard on yourself.

    CHRISTmas Blessings!

  2. I love your heart Lynette. Shed a tear or two if needed but dont stay there. You reminded me of that many of times on our walks :) BTW, you should sell some of your pictures. I for one think they are amazing!! I love the talents the Lord has blessed you with. You inspire me. ~ Trina

  3. Loved seeing the new bunnies! I know how you feel when one of the animals die accidently. When I get rabbits (maybe this spring) I will know what to do, thanks to your story!

    Love your header....Gorgeous Nubians!

  4. I'm a new visitor and enjoyed this post very much :) What sweet little ones! We live on a farm as well and totally understand the sadness of life fading away.
    I found you on the Friday hop :)

  5. It is so neat that a rabbit with fewer babies can foster babies from a larger liter. Very interesting post. I learned a lot about rabbits that I didn't know before.

    kateri @

  6. I used to raise rabbits. The kits are so soft.


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