No pics this time; I don’t think you will want to see them.
As many of you may be experiencing, we’re getting a lot of blasts of arctic cold, and a lot of unseasonably cold weather. It was 3 degrees when I woke up this morning, which is usually unheard of in this area–at least not multiple times a year. Our highs rarely get above 30. A 40 degree day is downright toasty. In a normal year, 40 would be a healthy daytime average.
But, well, this wasn’t a normal year!
And, of course, rather than kindling on those warm 30-degree nights last week, my new American doe (Cissy), kindled on the coldest night this week. So when I got up this morning and rushed down to water the rabbits before anyone else, this first time rabbit momma’s heart sunk as she looked into her first time momma’s cage.
Even if it had been a 20-degree night last night, or possibly even a 40-degree night last night, it wouldn’t have saved these kits. This first time, she kindled straight on the wire. No fur in her nest, no fur on the wire, no nothing–even though she’d tamped down her nest.
I have heard of many people who have had successful litters in cold that’s colder than this. What happened was a risk for many or most first-time rabbit moms. But that doesn’t make it any easier.
I am waiting on my Silver Fox doe to see what she does. If she kindles and they survive, it will add a little light to this day.