Best Laid Plans…

“You remember that impossible situation we discussed?”
“Yeah?”
“That’s what happening now!”

Of course, my life can never be normal. Never ever. Why would things be easy or normal?
We bred Evo expecting her to be either an emergency foster mom for Kibbles, or Kibbles would be a good mother for Evo’s kits. We had discussed this pretty thoroughly. This was to be Evo’s last litter; she produced two litters of four each. One was four frozen babies, the other litter died within 24 hours. We expected another litter of four. We had set up a potential new home, had a potential new breeder… Everything was ready to roll. But life is never that easy.

On may 4th I wandered out in the early morning to find five kits in the nest box… Not too bad but nothing like a big change. The next morning there were eight in the nest box. One of the babies was dead and a little bloody; stillborn. But there were still seven live kits, and as of right now they’re all healthy and happy.

Which brings up a connudrum. Greg and I agreed we’d re-discuss keeping her if she produced a big, healthy litter. But we basically dismissed the concept outright; after two nearly identical litters it was impossible that she’d have a real litter, right? We moved forward with considering what to do with her after she was done with the litter, and trying to find a replacement. And now we’re kind of stuck.

Rabbits are in a huge demand, and we have a low genetic pool with only one breeding pair of NZW’s. If Evo produces well enough, we have the potential of selling pairs and trios of half-siblings for breeding to other people who want rabbits. Our replacement is over one year old and has never been bred, she could flop horribly as a mother, while Evo is experienced and doing well (right now). We also wanted to find her a good pet home, because she’s a sweetie, and found one… If we keep her we have to cancel that.

It’s complicated and there’s no “good” solution. I can keep Evo and have good potential for more litters. I have a low potential for good litters from the possible new bunny. Also the home I have picked out may not be there forever.

We’ll probably keep Evo on for one more litter at least. It could just be she produces poorly in cold months. Which would be fine if we keep her for the summer. We’ll figure it out.

Aside from that, I have ninteen baby bunnies in my home right now. Five will be going home this weekend. Two are staying home with me; one to breed and one to eat, and the last one to go to a friend for meat and fur. The rest of the baby bunnies are up for sale.
The rex babies are growing extremely fast. They are the chubbiest bunnies I have seen thus far. They kept crawling out of their nest and throughout the cage, and one even slipped through a crack to escape from the cage itself. I found it four feet away underneath the hutch, perfectly fine. I finally dared to try putting a nest box in and hoped that Kibbles would ignore it. It worked; the baby bunnies have not gotten out of their nest since, and their mom has been ignoring the box. Success!

Maybe someday things will work out the way we expect…. Some day!

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