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Finally a colony for OGG! *Not even counting..*

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Finally a colony for OGG! *Not even counting..*

Post Number:#1  Unread postby ohiogoatgirl » Tue Dec 27, 2016 12:33 pm


After all this time I am biting the bullet. I bought a metal chicken bulk feeder. I bought a roll of fence. I have 3 does and their mom who have never been separated. I am far past out of cage space and I really need to breed some rabbits and cull whatever I don't need.

Sassypants (mom) is Californian.
3 does (mom x SF buck).

The section of the barn is about 55 sq ft. 10ft long, 5ft at one end and 6ft at other end, plus there will be some shelves and things for them to get away from each other.

Nests: I have really just been thinking to get several storage totes and cut a hole in a side and put those in there, spread out. Easy to clean and easy to open and close to check kits.

I have the SF buck and a Cali buck. I want to breed Sassypants to Cali buck, if I am not happy with what I get they might both be sold/eaten. I want to breed the 3 does back to SF buck, so the litters would be 75% SF and 25% Cali. I would play with line breeding what I get from them and cull for body type and good growth.
At this point I could keep several adults.. I could cull down to a pair and watch litters for future breeders..

Sassypants is being a bit hormonal right now. She has been ups and downs wanting bred. No fighting among them but they need more space and there is the possibility that they might not all meld for a colony. That will also be a culling point for me. At this point I want the does in the colony and bring them as wanted to the buck. Litters will have bucks separated at about 4-5wks and into a growout cage.
Note: currently Sassypants and the 3 cross does are in the big cage (5ft by 3ft by 2ft high, with an about 1ft by 3ft shelf in it). Not ideal, I know. But there hasn't been any issues other than some fur pulling (mom seems to be doing this as none of it is her fur! I am sure bc she is cali and all the fur is black and silvered) and the occurrence of the pulled fur fluffs being spotted align with her being hormonal acting.

Honestly right now my biggest worry is they kindle together and I wont know who is the best mom. Sassypants being bred to the cali buck means cali kits so I should be able to visually spot those kits from the others. However I have no idea what the cross does will throw with the unknown genotype behind the cali half of the genetics. So I might end up keeping the meatiest of the 3 cross does then keep whatever looks the best of the 75/25 cross back to go from there.

Water: This is my second biggest worry. I have a battle with water bottles and bowls as soon as it gets cold. Obviously the barn will be slightly warmer, but I still really don't have a good solution to try in the colony.

UPDATE 12/27/16

Yesterday I went to do chores and found something had gotten the cali buck. I am very upset that I hadn't been able to get things together and get them bred and all my plans. However this did mean that I called off work to do cleanup, reorganizing, and lots of work that I hadn't gotten to.

Sassypants (cali) was covered 3x by SF buck. I put the buck, sassypants, and the 3 cross does in the colony. From the time I was out there watching them they all seem to be quite happy with the new place. MrRabbit did attempt to breed the cross does (his daughters, 1/2 cali 1/2 SF) but they each ran away while I was out there watching.
I don't want to have mystery litters so I think I will take MrRabbit out back to his cage tomorrow. Kinda sad because he really seems to like hopping and lounging around the colony. This morning I open the door and he hopped right over and awaited pets! He is the most friendly rabbit I have and while he did get lots of pets in his cage he kind of seemed indifferent to my attention. Nope this morning he hopped right over to say hi and after I poured pellets in the feeder I sat down and he came over to sniff my shoes and get some more pets.

Now my wondering is if I take out the buck tomorrow how I want to go about checking and breeding the cross does in a week or so. They aren't friendly and don't like being grabbed much at all so it'll be like catching fish with my hands I'm sure.
Last edited by ohiogoatgirl on Sun Apr 16, 2017 10:54 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?!

Post Number:#2  Unread postby AnnClaire » Tue Dec 27, 2016 7:19 pm


Well, sorry to say, but worrying how catchable your does are after putting them into the colony might have called for a bit more planning. Hopefully others will learn from this.

I regularly house my rabbits in ground pens during the summer, so a few pointers might help in your situation.

You can use feeding time to capture your does ... only feed once per day, although I have noticed that does do not overeat when they have plenty of room to move around!

Also, adding a fence around the feeding station with a gate for them to come in and out for feeding can help you with catching them. It will just be one more feature of their pen.

I also recommend some some sort of cover area where they can "hide" under. This is an instinctive need and they will be happier for having it. If you make it flat topped, they will utilize it also.

Another consideration is what you are doing to keep them from digging out? If it is a dirt floored barn, you absolutely must have a barrier of some sort or they will tunnel out!

As for the fur flying, that will happen from time to time, but it is just the dominate doe establishing her dominance. It will happen any time a new doe is introduced, or if you take a doe out for an extended period of time. How long that is will be determined by the dominate doe LOL

If you want to give the buck ground time, make him his own runout area, just be sure the walls are tall enough to keep him in. Bucks don't dig as much as does, so no real barrier is needed like with the does.

As for the nest boxes, I would not recommend having the does kindle in the ground pen, but suggest you will be happier if you have some cages where you can move the doe with her nestbox for kindling. Does can be very deadly when it comes to other does breeding. With kindling cages, you will have more control over the babies and can socialize the babies easier if you take them to the doe for feeding, especially when they are up and around. Otherwise, you are raising wild rabbits that will be full of adrenaline when butchered.

You will also want the feed, water and hay rack to be accessible from the outside! LOL

I do know my rabbits are very happy on the ground in the summer and they don't seem to mind being back in the cages when the fall rains come.
cheers - AnnClaire

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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?!

Post Number:#3  Unread postby ohiogoatgirl » Wed Dec 28, 2016 1:48 am


My responses are in bold under the paragraph it's in response to.

AnnClaire wrote:Well, sorry to say, but worrying how catchable your does are after putting them into the colony might have called for a bit more planning. Hopefully others will learn from this.
I can catch them, they just are like snobby cats and really don't care to be handled. I have been back and forth planning a colony for several years I just hadn't had the chance or the right timing to attempt it yet.

I regularly house my rabbits in ground pens during the summer, so a few pointers might help in your situation.

You can use feeding time to capture your does ... only feed once per day, although I have noticed that does do not overeat when they have plenty of room to move around!
I feed once a day already. The feeder is a big bulk aluminum chicken feeder, so easy to just add more feed when there are litters.

Also, adding a fence around the feeding station with a gate for them to come in and out for feeding can help you with catching them. It will just be one more feature of their pen.
I don't know that I could do that without lessening the total area that the rabbits have to move around. I will think on that.

I also recommend some some sort of cover area where they can "hide" under. This is an instinctive need and they will be happier for having it. If you make it flat topped, they will utilize it also.
There is already a small 'bench' type thing in there for them and a milk crate. The ground isn't very flat or level enough and the feeder is placed on top of this currently. I plan to add more shelves and hiding spots.

Another consideration is what you are doing to keep them from digging out? If it is a dirt floored barn, you absolutely must have a barrier of some sort or they will tunnel out!
As I said above, I'm not a total newbie (no offense to anyone. gotta start somewhere). The colony is in a room of the barn and has wire over the dirt floor. They haven't done any real digging attempts yet so if/when that happens I may put some more wire down if they seem to really want to dig a certain area. Just to be sure.

As for the fur flying, that will happen from time to time, but it is just the dominate doe establishing her dominance. It will happen any time a new doe is introduced, or if you take a doe out for an extended period of time. How long that is will be determined by the dominate doe LOL
That's about what I figure. Since these does have never been separated and the fur pulling was while they were still in the large cage I'm putting it up to outgrowing the space and Sassypants being hormonal wanting bred. Also since I don't plan on adding outside rabbits to the colony I am not worried about that.

If you want to give the buck ground time, make him his own runout area, just be sure the walls are tall enough to keep him in. Bucks don't dig as much as does, so no real barrier is needed like with the does.

As for the nest boxes, I would not recommend having the does kindle in the ground pen, but suggest you will be happier if you have some cages where you can move the doe with her nestbox for kindling. Does can be very deadly when it comes to other does breeding. With kindling cages, you will have more control over the babies and can socialize the babies easier if you take them to the doe for feeding, especially when they are up and around. Otherwise, you are raising wild rabbits that will be full of adrenaline when butchered.
I have read a lot here and in several fb groups on colonies of people and their experiences with different ways, far as kindling and handling. I really think that with my setup and small amount of animals that kindling in colony will be the easiest. I am fine with culling a doe that is too aggressive for the colony. I am not worried about the young rabbits not being social as I spend a good amount of time with the rabbits as much as possible and that will likely be more time sitting in the colony now.

You will also want the feed, water and hay rack to be accessible from the outside! LOL
The colony is in the barn in a room. The only outside access to it is opening the door. I am not really worried about this though. The rabbits don't get under my feet (yet anyways) and I am keeping in mind changing where the water and feeder will be so as to be closer to the door.

I do know my rabbits are very happy on the ground in the summer and they don't seem to mind being back in the cages when the fall rains come.



Bought a live trap (coon size trap and came with smaller live trap inside like for squirrels etc. Got it set out at "the scene of the crime" and hope there is a varmit in there for me to deal with. I don't like not knowing what I'm dealing with. It really does not seem to be a coon though, so kinda glad of that. Coons are horrible! :angry:

I also got a latch to add to the existing door and latch of the colony. The latch already on the door is a simple hook and eye. I don't like the idea of a big coon having the possibility of opening the door. And I need to figure something to close the door from the inside while I go in it. I have a piece of twine on there for now but it takes me a minute to get closed and it wont last like it is.
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?!

Post Number:#4  Unread postby SarniaTricia » Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:07 am


OGG
Good for you.... I have done a bit of reading on the colony style raising.
I would like to try it with my meat mutts when I get a farm.

Keep us posted on how your does are doing and what solution you have found for "buck time"
That really interested me as I assumed you would be leaving the buck in the colony.

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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?!

Post Number:#5  Unread postby ohiogoatgirl » Wed Feb 01, 2017 12:46 am


I want to get a video and pics but need to get out there at the right time for good lighting. I will share when I get them.

I had thought a lot about ways of doing breedings and I just really like having the set timeline of knowing when the rabbits are due.

MrRabbit is such a lovey boy and is such a goofy guy in the colony. I really hate to take him out. But I also can't have unlimited breeding like would be able to leaving him in. I will give him a day or two more to try woo-ing the cross does then he goes back to his cage until I palpate the does and do cage breeding with whoever doesn't have kits then.

__________ Wed Jan 25, 2017 10:30 pm __________

Today is 30 days from putting the rabbits in the colony. I had decided to leave the buck in with the does to make sure he had as good of a chance to breed them. Well the one I KNEW got covered at least twice (cali doe) doesn't have any kits in her for sure. I palpated her. And I am on the doubting side that he was quick enough to get the 3 newbie does with the colony to run around.

I put the buck in a cage inside the colony. How long would you wait before bringing the does to him to breed? I was thinking a week. Give them some sort-of-separation hormones going maybe.

Hoping one of the young does maybe got bred and will palpate some kits but I wasn't up to playing catch-the-greased-pig today. Nest totes went in today just in case.

I feel bad for needing to put MrRabbit in the cage. He is such a sweetie that I'd almost rather put the does in cages and let him have the colony :roll:

__________ Sun Jan 29, 2017 11:58 pm __________

Today I managed to move quick enough to catch the biggest of the cross does and stuck her with MrRabbit and saw ONE breeding, and checked her to definite slime on the correct area ;) I could not get her to cooperate a second cover while I watched, even with holding her for him. Knowing she would run and not pick a fight with him (and that he isn't super pushy anyhow) I left her in his cage while I went back to the house and had a quick lunch. So crossing my fingers.
Feb 12th I'll try to palpate and Feb 28 due date.

Sassypants was not happy about hearing the ruckus of the doe grunting at MrRabbit or the clanging cage of 'action' going on... She stomped several times to voice her opinion on the matter. I told her if she would have just taken and the daughters have gotten bred they would all be kindling about this time and she would be happily mothering away. So don't blame me for the ruckus missy! Haha.

I am annoyed that none of them took though. I don't think MrRabbit is suitable breeding temperament for colony breeding to work. He is a lovey guy and would chase a bit but nothing enough to make them lift when they could easily run away and not be bothered much.

I am trying to decide if I want to try cage breeding the other cross does first or breed Sassypants tomorrow and then the other daughters. I kind of wanted to leave a gap between them so I could be sure which litter was hers. Since I want to see what I get in the 75/25 % litters and am still most likely to get black kits. If I keep any that seem to do really well I want it to be the linebred kits.
I am leaning toward breeding the other does first. Then a few days later breed Sassypants so I can be sure which is hers. I want to breed the daughters within day of each other so I can truly see which kits do the best if I decide to keep any.
On the other hand I am loathe to feed her longer and longer without being bred or having produced a litter. On the other hand as well, it's been this long what is a week longer :/

I have a girl at work who wants to buy a rabbit from me when I have one available. It would be nice to have a few bucks extra to compensate a bag of feed.

I am skimming the rabbits for fur section. I found a much easier seeming method the other day and am really wanting to try it and share if anyone else has used it.

__________ Mon Jan 30, 2017 12:45 pm __________

Grabbed another cross doe and got her covered twice! Huzzah!
I think I will do this for several days with the cross does. Make sure they get covered. then wait a day or two and breed Sassypants.

__________ Wed Feb 01, 2017 12:46 am __________

This morning grabbed two cross does and even Sassypants, no one wanted anything to do with MrRabbit this morning. I was running late so couldn't hassle them much. No one bred today. Have tomorrow off and lots of stuff to do. Will be going to try and breed at least one (two would be great) of the cross does.

I love MrRabbit but sometimes I think he is too much a softy romancer for the does and needs a little blue pill.... HA!

In other news.. I totally did not buy a very dark chocolate mini rex doe today.. nope.. totally didn't..
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?! *Now how about some kits!?

Post Number:#6  Unread postby SarniaTricia » Wed Feb 01, 2017 11:33 am


Love the updates GoatGirl!

Sometimes I think my bucks need a "little blue pill" too..... I feel like yelling, "stop trying to charm them and get IT done!" I've got to get to work..... lol :lol: :lol:

I have a less experienced, young, buck that really does try (His name is: TriHarder), but I think the girls like a strong, no nonsense, get the job done buck. Prince is that buck, but I don't want all my meat rabbits to be Chinchilla pelts... lol :D

Tri Harder should do better in the coming weeks, as he will be a bit older and hopefully wiser after "trying" then not having any lady visitors for a couple weeks. :mrgreen:

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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?! *Now how about some kits!?

Post Number:#7  Unread postby Ferra » Wed Feb 01, 2017 12:12 pm


Huh. My little buck has the opposite issue: Always so ready to go he often climbs the wrong end of the doe and sometimes finishes there. Little 5 second wonder.

I keep trying to break up the backwards matings to keep him from potentially getting injured someday, but it hasn't discouraged him so far. My husband claims that all I've done is set up a taboo and thus warped my bucks sexual development...

But as long as I can convince him to wait until she turns around, he's always quite eager to get to work!

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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?! *Now how about some kits!?

Post Number:#8  Unread postby ohiogoatgirl » Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:02 pm


2/11/17 one of the cross does had 6 kits and a decent nest but had the kits spread over the end of the tote where there wasn't hay or nest at. :/ they must have been born late in the night bc they were gone enough it was obvious none would warm up. a couple kits had minor scratches and I'm wondering if the doe had been jumping in and out of the tote to cause that.

2/13/17
TWO LITTERS! one of the cross does had a litter of 6 (same nest box as the previously lost litter) and had them tucked in a nice little nest! Huzzah! Sassypants had a litter of 2 (?!) stashed ever so secretively in the wooden crate. I tipped it over because it looked like it was filled up when one of the rabbits did some attempted digging. And then there was all this fur mixed in and two fatties rolled out if it! So I put it back as best I could and tucked them back in. Really puzzled why she only has two this time.

So one cross doe to go who may be bred or bred to kindle end of the month. Gonna have to wait and see.

Admittedly this is one of the things I was speculative of. I like knowing who is bred and due. I did treat the odd nest making of the first doe as if I knew she was bred and this was just before her due date, since that's what the signs were. But I do think I would rather have the buck separate and breed the does when needed. Right now there is much courting going on. None of the does were all that cooperative but for all I know he may have covered them as soon as they finished kindling.
I am marking the dates on my calendar and we shall see when they next kindle.


Meanwhile, the little dark brown mini rex doe... Ya I did totally buy her... She is in the cage on the floor of the colony as that is the only available spot at the moment. I really need to move things around and get a permanent rabbit cages set up for the buck, this doe, and the growout cages.

I am off for now. Actually off work today and heading to the auction with dad. Check out what junk is being pawned off and get some good grub at the little restaurant. Mmmm.

__________ Mon Feb 13, 2017 9:58 pm __________

According to my reverse counting..
~ Rabbits in colony Dec 26
~ Rabbits estimated bred date Jan 15
~ Rabbits kindled Feb 13

That means Sassypants didn't take when she was cage bred, like an hour prior to them all going into the colony.
That means that it took 21 days for them to settle into the colony and get bred and take the breeding. Assuming they kindled on day 30 exactly.

I wonder if there is a "settle into colony" time before breeding with other people's colony rabbits? Those with buck living in colony.

__________ Mon Feb 13, 2017 10:16 pm __________

more pics...

__________ Mon Feb 13, 2017 10:17 pm __________

moooore pics...

__________ Tue Feb 14, 2017 10:42 pm __________

Just got home from work. Dropped my stuff in the house and thought.. oy, I ought to check the rabbits. Just because I got a feeling.
Everyone was fine. Found a bit of a mystery. A dead kit. I think, darn it must be one of the kits held on and got pulled out of the nest and crawled around. Check Sassypants nest.. 2 kits.. Check cross doe nest.. 6 kits..
What the heck?!
The kit wasn't stiff yet. Either I miscounted somewhere.. Or a doe held out and this kit was born late?.. Or the last cross doe had this kit and didn't make any nesting efforts?.. I dunno. I hope if the last doe is bred that she will make a nest or at least have them at a time that I get out there and can save the litter put em with the other nests.

__________ Thu Feb 16, 2017 11:09 pm __________

This morning before heading out the second tote (hopeful nest spot) had been stuffed with hay. Hmm... I had put some hay in it but until this morning it had remained fairly ignored.
Got home and checked it, about 6/6:30pm. There seemed to be a little adjusting to it and.... A BITE OR TWO OF FUR! Huzzah! I may get another litter yet!
Just went out and checked before I settle in for the night (11pm) and there was nothing really changed, maybe another bite of fur. Guessing sometime tonight or tomorrow she'll pop.

ETA:
One kit in the cross doe's litter (75% SF, 25% cali) definitely has a white spot on its head. it will be interesting to see if this pops up some more with other kits as I now remember white spots being something culled for on the SF fb group.
If anyone knows if this is linked to other genes or patterning I would be interested to know more. I'll have to search through the fb group when I get a chance.

__________ Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:02 pm __________

cross doe litter: growing good. one kit with big obvious white spot on top of head. one, possibly two kits with small spit spots of white on top of head.

sassypants litter: good heavens the fatties! one is definitely bigger than usual and the other is pretty much twice the average size!

I was about to post last night and didnt because it was late and I was tired. I was going to post: "the second tote mystery nest seems to be simply there to make me look at it until eventually there will actually be a real nest and kits. "
Sure enough. I go out today and there is 7 little wigglers! One clearly has a big white blaze on it's head. They look good and have full bellies. One kit is smaller but looks like it should catch up with the others unless mom doesn't have enough milk.

The size of the newborn kits makes me curious. I feel like they are smaller than sassypants' newborns in past litters. Will have to see how they grow. Unfortunately I cant have the side-by-side comparison since Sassypants just has two big fatties.

I want to keep back a buck to test breed but I am unsure if I want/need one from the cross does (being a 75/25 kit) or from sassypants (being a 50/50 kit). Since I want to see what I get as far as type and growth but also interested in the color and pattern outcomes. Especially with color and pattern because of this spotting. will spotting happen more and more as a mainstay of the genetics? will the spots develop into something more than head spots that I'll possibly like? can I breed a certain way and try to weed out the spots?
Decisions, decisions.
Attachments
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Cross doe nest, me checking
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Cross doe nest, mom covered
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sassy2.jpg
Sassypants nest, me checking
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sassy1.jpg
Sassypants nest, mom covered
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lower half colony
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upper half colony (see bottom of the door?)
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Coco Chanel, the new MR doe
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?! *Two Litters!*

Post Number:#9  Unread postby 2CrazyFools » Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:20 pm


Awe! You've got all sorts of cute little wigglies to worry about! :} :love:
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG?! *Two Litters!*

Post Number:#10  Unread postby ohiogoatgirl » Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:13 pm


Well the fatties are getting fatter. The spots are getting more pronounced and some I feel like may end up with a couple white hairs on their head too.. All litters doing well. The youngest litter was fat as ticks about to burst this morning.

__________ Fri Mar 24, 2017 10:58 pm __________

I am not happy with how the 75% SF 25% cali litters turning out. Of the two litters (now over a month old) half of each litter was either as big as the older litter or as small as the younger litter. With a 5 day difference between them 2 of the older litter were what I would normally call small.. the rest of the litter was downright tiny. Looking at the nearly week younger litter the 1 larger kit was the same size as the small kits and the rest was tiny.
That was the last day before every kit of all litters was free running the colony. Once all out I couldn't tell you anything other than 5 were bigger than the rest of the tiny ones. Now (over a month old) only 3 are the biggest and all others are smaller and smaller.

I'm assuming 2 of the 3 biggest is the 50/50 kits from sassypants. Which very much did not grow as well as her past litters. Which I find very weird considering they should have had absolute tons of milk to themselves since she has raised litters of 6 and 7.

3/13 cross doe has litter of 9 in tote. assuming this doe is the doe that lost her first litter. assuming she was bred back.

3/14 Sassypants has litter of 5 in tote with previous cross doe litter. Despite there being another tote, cleaned and some fresh hay put in it.. left untouched.. I was doing chores and realized she was kindling so I held MrRabbit so she could finish in peace (he hopped in the tote twice and wouldn't buzz off) but soon as she was done and was out and drinking and eating I put him down and she lifted for him 4 times that I saw within five minutes of finishing kindling.

does have been sharing the nest since and are actually doing well. Lost 3 kits a couple days ago that were at the bottom of the pile and didn't seem to have eaten much or anything and that evening were both dead. I think those were of the cross does 9 because sassypants babies were newborn definitely bigger than the cross does kits. I have been checking every kit and trying to get the less fat fed ones to the top for the next feeding best spot.. that's the hope anyhow..

3/23 butchered the "stay of execution" rabbits (don't ask, it was crazy) and finally got the cage cleaned out, mucked underneath, and moved the buck to a cage and the growouts to the big cage.

3/24 cross doe had litter of 9. NOT bred back.

I am still going with that the last cross doe is going to kindle anytime now. I need to put another tote in the colony. I hadn't before because it takes up valuable floor space when ALL the rabbits were in there and all the babies.

I am very curious to see if there will be a big difference with these litters vs the current month old litters. Especially the two litter nest. They are always fat as ticks about to pop when I check them. if these litters do much better I am considering keeping the biggest buck kit back. But only if they grow decently. And I am imagining if there is one worth deciding to keep back that it's more likely to be from sassypants and therefore a 50/50 cross. or if it end up being a 75/25. And how the resulting litters would be. Bred back to Sassypants and back to the cross does. As well as what happens with more or less white spots on the heads of some or colors end up with.

ETA: I cleaned nests and realized I miscounted (post edited to fix that). Also, the 2-in-1 nest litters are doing very well. The 50/50 kits are much bigger than the rest. At least there is 5 much larger kits and 5 decent size kits and 1 small kit with white forehead, so definitely the cross doe litter. Lost 3, assuming them to be of the 75/25 litter.
I don't want to jinx it but I REALLY want to keep a buck from the 5 large kits. And hopefully if I do end up with a buck saved back and like the outcome of those litters I will try to find him a new home... or he may very well stay on as basically a pet and possibly other test breeding...

~Adults: 6
cali- sassypants
SF- MrRabbit
3 cross does
MiniRex young doe (in a cage btw)
~Growouts: 13
litters of 2, 6, 6 (and 6 lost not birthed in nest)
~New litters: 20
litters of 9, 5, 9 (current losses: 3)

TOTAL HEADCOUNT: 38

:lol: It never occurred to me until earlier today at work to count how many I had right now... Good thing dad doesn't count them or ask the total... :x
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG! *Thirty-Eight?!*

Post Number:#11  Unread postby SarniaTricia » Mon Mar 27, 2017 12:24 pm


I don't count the kits that are under butcher age... if I did ..... I think I would have a fit!!! :cry: :evil: :o

So I like to say ....I'm at a feed bag every two days.... stage...lol
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG! *Thirty-Eight?!*

Post Number:#12  Unread postby AnnClaire » Tue Mar 28, 2017 1:55 pm


Saving back the best of your growouts is how you develop a production line. With the crossing of two meat lines, you can select for characterises you want. To help further that, you should be butchering for your table :) There are lots of good recipes in the recipes section ... have you had your own rabbit yet? :P

Also, how close are you getting to the SOP for a meat rabbit? It really comes down to body type, so finding a SOP for a target body type can help keep your lines progressing. Shoulders seems to be an area of concentration in most meat breeds :)

Sounds like you're getting a handle on your accessory section :D

As you said about the totes being too big for your situation, maybe you can find a smaller solution. The does really only need an area that is 1" bigger than they are, basically like a chicken nest box, one right next to the other with a hinged top. Or, if you make individual nest boxes, they can be stacked out of the way when not in use as you don't want the does hanging out in them! And I find that a 3" "kit scraper" on the front opening works best :lol:

I applaud your decision to keep the bucks separate ... I believe you will be much happier with the control it gives you! I have a friend that just took her chickens and basically tossed them outside, then decided she wanted distinct breeds and now can't get them all caught! LOL Definitely had to bite down on "I told you so" :LOL:

Ah well one of these days she'll get a handle on it!

Anyway, your dad probably has a wood pile that you could use? Thinner wood would be best to keep the weight to something you can handle on your own :)
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Re: Finally a colony for OGG! *Thirty-Eight?!*

Post Number:#13  Unread postby ohiogoatgirl » Tue May 09, 2017 12:02 am


Long time coming but been really busy. Tomorrow I am off work and going to clean out the colony. Been losing baby rabbits and I am quite sure the only thing left to blame is something going on with worm or an illness being harbored in the bedding. I am not losing kits in the nest unusually. I am losing ALOT of kits unusually a lot of kits once they are out of the nest. of the first round of litters I have 9 remaining. Luckily whatever this is isn't affecting the does. And MrRabbit is doing fine in his cage.

I have 3 litters currently running the colony at 4wks and 3wks (off top of my head). and a 2+week litter thankfully not trying to leave the nest yet. 1 litter several days old and one litter born yesterday to Sassypants. Which should make the last of the litters I am expecting from everyone.
Litters are 9, 9, 11, 8 for this round.

While I am happy with the colony I am not happy with the bedding and digging. I am not worried about them digging out with the wire laid down. I am worried if I didn't keep up on checking and filling back in the holes and starts of tunnels that I would go to walk around and collapse in tunnels. Used hay bedding does not make for stable tunneling.

I am planning on where to build the new colony. It will be a cage colony. I really just don't do well with ground bedding. And elevated wire floors are so much easier upkeep and just shoveling underneath as needed.

The Mini Rex doe is doing fine. She looks really good and I am glad that I got her. Though now with my line breeding not going as planned I would have also been happy to have a MR buck ;) but oh well.
I have something going on the end of May but really want to breed her to MrRabbit.. If I bred her tomorrow she would be due May 16/17.. And I will be away the 26-28 so they would be more than a week old and nothing really to worry about by then. Since Dad will be going chores for me. (Sidenote, another reason I am slightly against the ground colony).

__________ Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:27 am __________

I have the does in a big cage out on the grass and the kits in another cage on the grass. Two nest boxes sitting in the colony as I clean it.

I have found a baby :/ It must have went way back inside a tunnel that I missed because I don't remember filling in a tunnel there. It was perfectly untouched. Not something I was happy to find at all. Also, I dislike cleaning the ground bedding even more now actually doing it. Ugh.

Gotta get on planning the new colony soon as I finish this.

__________ Mon Apr 17, 2017 1:40 pm __________

Well when I finished and was putting everyone back I checked the MR doe and she was deep pink... well hell... So I put her in with MrRabbit and he covered twice in less than a minute. If he put his head over her at all she laid out for him.. I took her out for a minute and let him catch his breath, put her back in and he got her again.
Due date May 17.
I am curious to see what she has. Since she is chocolate and MrRabbit has some white and a blue in his extended pedigree. Also how the fur ends up. It'll be interesting for sure.

So 3x covered and this may well be my last litter for a while. It's already pretty darn warm here and I don't like hot nests and hot growouts that don't want to eat.

I realized the older litters in the colony were past ready to be separated. So they went in the growout cage and will be gone soon. I left 3 kits in the colony because they are much smaller. It figures that almost all of the kits are does.. and basically all the smallest ones are the bucks.. because I would totally try growing out a buck kit to breed the cross does and sassypants to.. but no.. :|

It was nice to get the does out into the cage and get a good hard look at them all side by side. One of the cross does is definitely smaller and has significantly less silvering. She has lost condition and is looking a bit haggard. But I think she may be the last doe to kindle right before Sassypants litter. If so I cant blame her much because it would make four litters back to back for her I think. On the other hand Sassypants is definitely on her fourth litter back to back and she is in good condition.
But either way she is definitely smaller and much less silvering. I am going to consider if I want to try selling her or just butcher her and focus on the other rabbits.

Side note for the line breeding...
I am wondering if once I get the cage colony setup and get breeding again if there will be a change in growout size. If the ground colony and my kit losses are also affecting growth it is possible. I may yet get silvered meat mutts.

__________ Tue May 09, 2017 12:02 am __________

Thought yall would like to see this clip. I was cutting 'pickers' out of the sheep paddock this morning and the bugger sheep kept stealing what I cut from the bucket! Here I am cutting them down where the sheep won't reach up to and they steal it from me... Hrmph.. I ended up having to hold the bucket up and clip the greenery into it to keep the sheep from eating it all before I could get it to the rabbits.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BT1kU54hr1u/

Clip from a few days ago when I cut a big apron-full of greens. Mixed grasses, plantain, white clover and giant red clover, yarrow, dandelion,...
https://www.instagram.com/p/BTp7qHVhTHZ/

Clip of the nicest of the 3 cross does. Pretty sure she is the largest (size wise) and feels like the largest weight wise. She has kept good condition. She has the best silvering. She has occasionally let me pet her although really prefers I just leave her alone.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BTJw4yIhX2D/

Clip of Cocoa. I did palpate her and I believe she has at least a couple globs hiding in there. So cross your fingers and toes!
https://www.instagram.com/p/BTJvgXvBJqX/

Clip of MrRabbit. Such a sweetie.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BTJvSs3BHo6/

A couple of the litters (I believe the 75% SF cross backs) had this crazy clumping of silvering. Two of them were obvious (see clip) but I lost them at weaning :/ None of the others was as clear as this and when I sold the older group none showed of being unevenly silvered at all. The higher % cross backs definitely have better silvering though. I just wish they grew better.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BTJvD2uBsfK/

Fat babies clip. These guys had just finished opening their eyes. At this age they were fat. When they grow more they are not nearly so promising looking. I will have to get a clip of these litters tomorrow at chores.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BS_zUjiBaIg/

Clip of a cross doe "primping" in front of the tote nest to cover the entrance.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BRqeT4BhSzV/

These two pics show pretty good idea of size of all them (not Cocoa) next to each other. Back when MrRabbit was still living in-colony.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BRLubaKBJGg/
https://www.instagram.com/p/BRCFxWhBBun/

Clip of MrRabbit letting a kit snuggle up to him while the does kept scooting the kits away to keep eating pellets.
https://www.instagram.com/p/BRF2elFhL-x/
Sometimes I think about how insane people are these days... I mean I am crazy.. but I am the good crazy.. My crazy makes crafts and feeds animals and makes adorable baby animals and feeds people...


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