When we moved to Colorado this past Fall, we decided to leave behind the beautiful but cumbersome rabbit hutch that Ben and the boys built during our first Montana summer. Instead, for temp housing, we opted for two rather large wire chicken cages that I got from a rancher out there. They’re meant to be poultry transport cages and not permanent dwellings but have served the bunnies well over the winter. The only problem is that they are easy to unlatch and our female, Flospy, has figured out how to free herself into the larger rabbit yard (which is just a prefab dog run). Our intent has been to build a proper hutch once Spring arrives.
Well, guess what happened last month? Flopsy got out into the yard for a prolonged period of time while Grayson, our male, was also out. Sure enough, 30 days later (which was last Sunday) Flopsy had a litter of six. Luckily, my in laws were visiting last month and my father in law constructed a wonderful little wooden nesting box before he headed back East. The box has been in the cage for weeks which gave her time to get used to it and, to our great relief, she had the babies there. Historically, she hasn’t been the most attentive mother and once delivered a litter scattered all over her cage. They got too cold and didn’t survive. Other times, she has been totally clueless about nursing. This time around, instead of trying to “help” her as we have in the past, we decided to leave her alone except for providing her with lots of water and good food (pellets, Timothy hay, and the occasional carrot or lettuce leaf). Even though we have still had nights with temps below zero, we have nervously left mama Flopsy and the babes to themselves (but with lots of hay!). She made a great nest with hay and her thick long fur and, thankfully, the babies are fine. Its going to be such fun seeing them grow! Now to design and build that hutch…….