So, a dear friend was getting out of the Mini Rex rabbits and offered some to us. She gave us 10, 7 females and 3 males. The 3 males are ... Jack, Ozzy (not after Osborne) and Oscar. The 7 females are Alice, Esmerelda, Beatrix, Kate, Gingerbread, Cocoa and Luna. And of course Juniper, my beloved (growling & biting) French Lop
They started out on temporary cages while we work on building a better containment system on the way to my ultimate goal of raising them in a natural colony. I've been looking into colony raising all summer and have plans for a large one. In the mean time I turned our old chick pen into a colony house for Juniper and had the new Rabs in cages the way they came and were raised. the 3 males in one, seperated by a board from the females. Of the females they were 4 in one cage, 2 in one cage and 1 in one cage. All that changed the second day.
The morning of the second day I had a feeling something was wrong with the rabbits so We went right to them. One of the 3 males, Jack, was attacking the 2 other males and had beaten up poor Ozzy pretty badly. We got Jack out and had to figure out what to do. I'm working on a new cage but it's not finished, so we put him in a carrier by himself.
I went about chores (without morning tea or coffee) and thought about what to do as a better fix. Juniper preferred to be in the barn, she never took to the colony house that well, she's older and has always been close to me. So i made the decision and we started a small colony then and there.
Juniper went into her old house in the barn and I moved Jack to the colony. My friend had explained that you should always move to females to the male so they won't be territorial with him. I also read that this way was best. So I let Jack stay in the colony alone for a while and then added the 4 females, Gingerbread, Rose, Cocoa and Beatrix. I was a little worried but it felt like the right thing to do. I watched them for about an hour then had to run to town. When we got back I was so happy to see that they seem to be doing wonderfully!
They've now been in the colony for 48 hours and still appearing to thrive. We'll see.
For now the other 5 are still in temporarily housing until we can build another colony house and yard for them. Alice, who lives alone, may never be able to integrate with the others. But we'll see. Also, if I can get the other cage finished, we'll remove Jack and hope no one is pregnant. I would like to wait before any of that goes on so we can get to know them all better and have better baby weather etc.
Esme is solid black. Their fur feels like the finest velvet.
((((((((( Heat ))))))))))