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Farm Updates

A place to post bits of news, ideas, musings and other things that don't really fit into the other forums.
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Farm Updates

Post Number:#1  Unread postby guardianoasis » Wed May 23, 2018 11:46 am


I kinda wanted to start a thread just general updates. I have the Facebook page but there's just some stuff I can't update on there because.... well people....

So April kinda sucked. We didn't have the internet and I didn't really get a chance to come on here or anywhere. All of my March breedings failed. Most of them just failed to get pregnant and the rest the litters died within the first 24 hours. We started feeding everyone apple cider vinegar in their water just because I felt better about it... I don't know that it actually did anything to help but it was something, something to buy me some time in not giving up on the rabbits. We hadn't had a litter since October and I'd lost them all because of a move. I threw it to the wind and said what the heck and bred everyone. Or tried to breed everyone. I have my notes somewhere but about half the does got pregnant, but we lost four or five litters mostly due to first time does being bred and a couple veteran does on their first litters since who knows when. I decided that due to the circumstances I wouldn't hold this, or the previous time against them. It's been a really bad winter.

Luckily though 4 litters did have surviving kits and I'm the proud mom of 20 growing babies for the first time in like... Well my last litter was Halloween. So there ya go. (Pictures in the reply)

So we rebred everyone who came up not pregnant or lost their litters. This week was kindle week and we had 8 of 9 successful litters. So far we've only lost 8 kits out of the 71... I think. If my math adds up correctly. One kit was a stuck kit that was extremely huge. I feel like it took up one horn to itself and got stuck killing off the two remaining in the other horn. That doe is usually a REALLY good mom and this was her first litter in a year. So... Her daughter had her first litter ever and gave birth to 8 in her nestbox with fur and everything like the good girl she is. She's lost three but I can't complain when they get it semi right on the first go. The rest have been runts that have passed.

This week we are breeding the does with litters now and does that didn't come up pregnant last time, had litters that died off or haven't been bred yet. We've kinda adapted a heavier breeding schedule this year with kits being weaned at 6 weeks and does being rebred at 4 weeks after birth. It gives them a couple weeks free of kits before they have another litter so it's not TOO heavy. But the issue is our does are getting older with most of them at or over 3 years old. I'm worried about loosing all these good does without replacing them. So with all the new litters we'll be working on quickly replacing them so we can back off on the older does and retire them to wherever they would fit best.

I'm really excited to see where this year takes us with the rabbits. So far I've learned a couple things from these breedings.
1) I have way more chocolate in my herds than I realized.
2) My one buck carries both chocolate and blue, and is an otter so he's going to be very valuable to me for a bit.
3) His full brother carries blue and non-e... I have torts in my litters!
4) I really need to stop doubting myself and just do the things....

That's it for now. I'll get the pictures lol

__________ Wed May 23, 2018 9:46 am __________

Image
Pretty sure this is a buck. Checked it but ya know how that goes.

Image
Our only meat mutt doe and her very first litter ever at over a year old (probably like 18 months). She is the direct descendant of the first Am Chin doe that I purchased when I started this adventure with rabbits in late 2015. She's 1/4 American Chinchilla and 3/4 New Zealand and an awesome mom despite loosing half of her kits.
Currently breeding American Chinchilla and Satin rabbits.
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Re: Farm Updates

Post Number:#2  Unread postby Marinea » Thu May 24, 2018 8:02 am


Sorry you were having issues, but it looks like you have turned it around.

That buck is beautiful.
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Re: Farm Updates

Post Number:#3  Unread postby guardianoasis » Tue Jul 03, 2018 11:56 am


Thank you and yes it does seem like I've turned it around a bit. I'm hoping I am wrong and that is a doe because it's so cute. But I have quite a few more otters in these new litters including one that looks like a lilac otter. So that's exciting.

__________ Tue Jul 03, 2018 9:56 am __________

It's been a while, time for an update. :campfire:

So our second round of breedings was ok. Out of all the kits that we had, only 6 of them survived. I blame myself and have reason to do so... not just out of feeling bad. We want to build up to a commercial rabbitry and I tried to push to hard to quick and weaned the kits earlier than I usually would, by earlier I mean 4 weeks instead of 6-8 weeks. Add that with a quick shift in weather, which I had no control over, and we lost most of them to bloat. Luckily of the ones that did survive, four of them were does. My third round of breedings I lost a couple litters but the majority survived. I forced myself to not go through them until yesterday at 6 weeks. Right after I did it, I'm regretting doing it simply because I've removed kits from does and now don't know who belongs to who anymore and so those rabbits don't have their pedigrees. I know I wanted to go through kits and separate some of them out so that the mothers had a lighter load but it wasn't until after the fact that I realized I may want to keep some of those kits to carry on lines because of their conformation.... :wall: So yeah.... Now I'm just trying to remind myself that I can't keep them all and move on. :shrug: With the next batch of kits I'll have a better system in place for separating kits. Since I am working on building upto a commercial rabbitry, any of the kits I've already separated if I decide to keep later I can just re-add them as "meat mutts" even though I know they are either Satins or Am Chins. So it's not a complete loss.

I've been lucky enough to get litters from all four of my VERY senior Am Chin does and my Am Chin buck. The buck developed an abscess and sneezing lately and has had to be quarantined. He's pushing if not over 5 years old and I don't expect him to be around much longer. I've been trying to stay as detached but compassionate for my rabbits through this whole process simply because if/when the day comes I need to cull someone for illness or behavior it's a little easier because I'm not attached. Shock's actually the first one I've become attached to since the restart of my rabbitry last year. He's just been so good to the kids and eager to do his job that it will be tough to see him go, which may be a choice I have to make soon despite wanting to retire him to a hutch just outside the back door of my house. We did stud him out and retained a very nice buck he sired from an unrelated doe and all the American Chinchilla kits I have right now are sired by him, so his legacy will continue on. I'm just not ready. :allalone:

Moving on.

Rabbits are not breeding like rabbits this time around and I restarted the apple cider vinegar back up even though it's time consuming. I'm not really willing to drive half my herd around trying to get them in the mood but the vinegar isn't to bad of an intervention. The goal is to build up the rabbitry to run without interfering as much as possible but at the same time I've got A LOT of rabbits that are pushing VERY senior and I need to get replacement kits. Anyway, I'm just rambling. Talk to yall soon.
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Re: Farm Updates

Post Number:#4  Unread postby SixGun » Tue Jul 03, 2018 12:57 pm


You've experienced so much and taken so much away from all thats happened. That is awesome.

In my experience, your buck with the abscess has pasturella. It can definitely show up as an abscess, and I had a litter where it showed up in two... and then abscesses appeared in the next cage over. Either way, after culling all that had abscesses I never had another. So, I'm glad he is in quarantine, but I dont think you'll be able to get him healthy again. We even lanced them on the one buck, as he was simply stunning in conformation, but, it redeveloped within two weeks, and another one started.

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