Wednesday, December 28, 2005

All 10 still going strong!

I'll post another pic when they open their eyes.

Meanwhile, I've been reading up, with some help from Google Language Tools and some friends, on rabbit coat color genetics thought in Europe. I have uncovered an interesting theory that red can be developed from selfs as well as agoutis and tans. The key is the wideband gene. Apparently, wideband is said to clean up the smut the non-extrension gene leaves in torts as well as in tans. I would LOVE to put that theory to the test, but I do not have room in my rabbitry. I do have a tort French buck whom I know to have one recessive wideband gene. The test would be to breed him to another tort with a recessive wideband gene, and see if any *apparently* self-reds come out of the breeding. Anyone up to the challenge? We could work something out.

Friday, December 23, 2005

So far, so good...



I've worked out a routine with this litter. Every evening I feed the bunns, let them munch a bit undisturbed, then I take Mopsie out of her cage and inspect the babies. I lay them out on a clean towel with a bit of fuzz and check to see that no wool is wrapped around any parts and that their little bellies are full. I return the fat ones to the nest and if any are looking a little skinny (usually 2 of them do) I take them and Mom upstairs for a little quality nursing time on my lap. Then I return them to their proper places and bid them goodnight. First thing in the morning, I reach in the nest and check them out by feel, if all feels well I get on with feeding and leave everyone alone. Mopsie seems comfortable with this routine.

She pulls more wool for them every day. The room they are in is not directly heated, but in the winter stays around 40 degrees, even in the most bitter weather. I am just amazed at how well all 10 are doing! I do notice that Mopsie spends a lot less time lying next to Snowman (in the next cage) than she used to. I wonder if somehow she realises he's responsible!? LOL!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

I have baby bunnies... :D

There are a few things in life better than a new litter of little wigglers, but I can't think of too many. Yesterday afternoon Roberts' Mopsie, my German doe from old lines, gave birth to NINE babies! *** Correction, she had TEN babies, all well as of Thursday morning*** All are alive and well so far this morning. With a litter this size, I always expect to lose 1 or 2 right off the bat, but not so far...

The proud poppa is Storybook Dreams Snowman, my buck from 100% recent import lines. This guy must be fertile! I actually wanted a small litter, the doe is just 8 months old and Snowman is young (I find younger bucks usually produce smaller litters) so I just put them together for one breeding and removed the doe promptly. Usually, I leave them together for awhile, particularly if, as in this case, they are housed next to each other and are friends.

If all goes well with this litter, large healthy litters are something I want to strive for, so I expect we'll be keeping a doe.

Meanwhile Snowman has a date with a favorite doe I sold to my friend Cheryl, JG's Little Brat



Cheryl and I will have to get together soon on that. :D

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Since I haven't posted any pics lately, I thought you'd all enjoy a picture of JG's Carmella. I'll be breeding her in February for a March litter. I haven't decided to whom yet. I have a little blue buck I was thinking of, but he mats easily and requires a lot more grooming than I'd like. But he should carry rufus, he's from the Otter program. He also has a lot of furnishings, he's really cute, and friendly. And he has a great butt! ;)

Carmella

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Winkie's babies...

... are all shorthairs. I knew there was a chance she didn't carry angora. At least the babies do, since their sire is an angora. I'm not absolutely sure of the sexes yet, but I will keep a buck and a doe from this litter, at least for awhile. The blue otter definitely, and one of the black otters. So much for weeding out all the shorthairs from the program!

I don't plan on breeding Carmella and Persnickety until after the PaSRBA Convention in February. So I look for Otter Angora litters in March. I hate to wait that long, but right now my purebred Germans and Giants are taking precedence. I *think* Dumpling's breeding to Gruff has taken, I'll know for sure in about 10 days. Also, I bred Mopsie to Snowman, my new buck from import bloodlines. I especially want that breeding, both rabbits have such dense wool, I believe either of them might meet IAGARB registration requirements.

If by chance the breedings didn't take, both does will go to the PA Convention in February. Dumpling has never been shown, I'd like to see how she does. Snowman might go, too, just for fun.