The Rabbit Barn

The new rabbit barn has been a source of frustration.  We had a guy who was supposed to be working on it, but two months later (yesterday), found out that he hasn’t done anything!  Got a quote from another guy and it was double what we were originally quoted.  Wally and I discussed it and decided to take a few steps back and re-evaluate the project.  Often when we do that, we come up with a better idea.

I put four tractors of rabbits up in what was formerly the goat pasture.  The grass is beyond lush there.  It is not terribly level so we are limited as to where the tractors can go.  On Sunday, we are going to make four more raised beds to put rabbit tractors on top of.  We will put wire at the bottom of the beds so that the rabbits we put in them cannot dig out.  These tractors will be used for pregnant does.  Pregnant does are bad for digging.  The other day, I discovered a massive hole dug by doe(s) in one tractor.  I don’t know who did the digging, it may have been one doe or several.  They are all going to get moved to one of these tractors on raised beds.  When it comes time for them to kindle, they’ll go in kindling cages.  I can move the does and kits back out onto these tractors on raised beds earlier than I can move them on the ground.  I can leave does with their kits without their digging for several weeks, then once they are re-bred, the digging starts again.

My initial thought was to cull rabbits that are excessive diggers, but digging is a normal thing for a rabbit.  It is simply a matter of managing the herd as best I can keeping the rabbits’ welfare in the forefront, but also keeping our welfare in mind.  I’m sick of tripping in rabbit holes and they are dangerous!  Filling them in is not always a fix because they frequently get dug back up and the grass does not always grow back that well.

I’ve got to get to a better place with growing food here (vegetables and forage) and until I can get that piece in place, the rabbits are going to have to be managed in a way that I have the free time to focus on the plant growing.  The more I can grow to feed to the rabbits, the better off everyone will be.  There is no doubt in my mind that are rabbits have a better life than most; but Wally and I need to keep our lives in mind too.  We can’t risk burn-out.

This week has been particularly busy.  I presented my Shark Tank proposal three different times last week and that really sapped me.  Presenting in front of a group of people is nerve wracking.  Luckily, my best presentation was in front of the people that mattered: the judges.  Wally attended.  I was told I did a good job and I think I did.  I felt very comfortable and in my element.  The judges asked lots of questions, which is good.  Fingers and toes crossed!  Hopefully I’ll make it into the finals.

Until later …