Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Busy Day

Our buck has arrived!  He is the first California I've seen up close and is SO different from other rabbits I've handled in the past.  He is built very wide, long and deep - just like any other four-legged meat animal.  For some reason I'm shocked by how stout he is, but it really is amazing for an animal so small.

While our "rabbit connection" was here she checked the sex on our two New Zealands - lo and behold...they're boys!  I apparently bought them at an age they're not very easy to sex (she may have said this to be kind) and now that they're older their testicles have descended so it's pretty clear they're bucks.  "When they're very small the boys holes are circular while the girls are a slit."  FYI.  This bit of news means that we will be butchering them within a month.

She said she had two does to sell (many really, but we only want two) and would gladly bring to us the next time she comes to town (from Lima).  Pretty nice that she has a whole harem of breeding rabbits so we can get what we need from her.  The Californias have dark ears, so they won't sunburn like the New Zealands are starting to from being in the sun and grass.

A note on new skills acquired - today I stitched the skin on top of my dogs' paw back together.  My first time stitching though I've helped with fixing animals (mostly cows and horses though) up plenty of times, which is handy because I knew what I needed in the way of bandages etc.  This is not the first time I've had to doctor him.  Last winter his shoulder was torn open and had to be bandaged daily for a couple weeks.  Several small wounds in the past but this was his worst to date.  Good thing he is such a good patient.  I would not have had to stitch him if a vet had made time, but they weren't taking emergencies today (even if it was something that would have taken them a half hour).  Very frustrating but ultimately not too big of a deal.

There were thunder storms rolling through today, and when I milked this evening the rain was falling heavy on the  barns tin roof.  I love milking when it's raining for the sound of it.  It is so calming to hear, maybe because my favorite house when I was growing up had a tin roof, but it's so nice.  Opal, however, was so full of it she was running in and out of the stall I milk in and jumping with all four legs off the ground, bucking and kicking and shaking her head.  Nothing like a warm day and a cool rain to bring us all to life!


Anonymous said...

Hi Erin it Laura Duggan I was going to tell you that we have Californian rabbits that we breed if you knew when you were going to be in town we could breed for you and you could taken them back with you.

Erin said...

Hi Laura!! Thanks, but we have a breeder here too :) I had no idea you guys raised them though, do you eat them too?

Anonymous said...

No we dont eat them Paige does meat pen for 4-H but because the fair is sooner this year than in the past i dont think we are going to make weight. So we have 3 or 4 litters of rabbits. in all we have 6 or so Californians and then add all the babies(too many!) and some othes for showmanship.