New Zealand White Kit Weights at 11 Weeks, 7 Weeks, and 3 Weeks Old

Above is Phoebe’s 3rd Litter at 3 Weeks Old, waiting to be weighed. They really have grown so much since the last time I posted a photo of them. They are round little fluffers now full of personality and determination. One of her bunnies had to be cleaned. It looked like it had had the runs. It is the one with the lowest weight. It did not like handling, but we got it into a comfortable enough position for me to use some warm water and a paper towel to get it cleaned up. Then we held it in front of the heater for a bit to dry. Heater’s only on 60 so it wouldn’t overheat the bun, but I didn’t want to leave it still wet. We will keep an eye on it and make sure it stays clean. At least as the runt, it is easy to pick out. I am wondering if the transition from milk to solid food is just a little rough for him because of his size.

I have decided that even though I weigh the rabbits on their appropriate day of the week they were born, that I am only going to post kit weights once a week. Since they were all born on Saturday, Sunday, or Monday, this post will likely be on Monday nights or Tuesday. That way I won’t be cluttering the blog up with as many weight posts, but all the weights will still be posted. I will post final and dress out weights separately, still.

It has been so cold outside that the cooler full of rabbit meat and ice water on the porch froze solid. We brought it into the house last night to help it thaw out. It has thawed enough now to get the rabbit meat out, so we will be cutting it up and making sausage and stir-fry meat. Also, the son has put in a request for Rabbit Cheeseburgers again, so we will save out enough to have those for dinner tonight. It also has been so cold that we have put the heater back in the rabbit shed. You can still see your breath out there, but they seem comfortable. At least it is only the cold and there is no snow to accompany it like some people have right now.

The chickens are doing well despite the cold. One benefit of the cold is that they are laying in the nesting boxes instead of hiding their eggs in secret nests like they sometimes do when it is warmer. We got 6 eggs yesterday. We’ve been averaging about 4 a day lately from 11 hens. We have to check the coop often though because the eggs will freeze in this weather. Their biggest joy right now is when I bring out a tote full of rabbit manure and hay for the compost pile. They make a beeline for it and scratch happily. It is about the only place thawed enough to do so. They find a lot of barley seeds that have fallen through the wire from the fodder into the dropping pans and also I throw any unsprouted seeds in the compost for them to dig through and eat.

We started homeschooling back up yesterday with our son. It went surprisingly well. Usually when we’ve been away from it for a while he is reluctant to get started. We’re starting a unit on Ancient Greece, which he knows backwards and forwards from two years ago so it is easy for him. I don’t know why they repeat history so much in school. Science was a snap, if a bit long. Literature was half a short story so that went pretty fast. The other half will be today. Grammar went well, as did Math. I like it when it is easy.

The daughter went back to high school Monday as well. I think she was really glad to go since she barely saw her friends over the holidays. She said half the kids wore their new pajamas. I shake my head every time I hear that. Things have sure changed a lot since I went to school. Though I suppose warm PJ pants would be nicer than jeans right now.

The fodder system is still coming along nicely, although I do think the barley in the see through containers grows faster than the barley in the white containers. Getting barley seems to be the highlight of their day. They certainly all rush the doors for it. They are all still eating some pellets and of course hay, which they still need for roughage. But I’d say 3/4 of their daily diet is on fodder. I am letting Sweetie Belle and Piper have as many pellets as they want for the next week so they can get their weights back up, before we switch them to a non-pregnant or lactating portion.

Last night we finally separated the rest of the 11 week old kits from Sweetie Belle and Piper. We also took one of the bunnies who had been in a cage with 3 rabbits and put it with the 2 from Sweetie Belle’s cage. We watched for a while to make sure there would be no fighting, but they seemed to recognize their former litter mate and it wasn’t long until they’d all curled up into a heap. Now the older kits are all 3 to a cage. As for weights, 5 of Piper’s kits have hit slaughter weight and 7 of Sweetie Belle’s have so we will likely put Kalia in with those two and let them get closer to weight after we process those 12. With Kalia’s smaller size we shouldn’t have any problems figuring out who is who.

Alright, without further ado, kit weights:

Piper’s (x Starbuck) Fifth Litter at 11 Weeks Old:

Kit 1: 4 lb 5 oz (Kalia, runt)
Kit 2: 5 lb 9.3 oz
Kit 3: 5 lb 11 oz
Kit 4: 5 lb 13.3 oz
Kit 5: 5 lb 13.7 oz
Kit 6: 5 lb 8.9 oz

Total Litter Weight: 33 lb 13.2 oz

Amount Gained: 3 lb 8.8 oz

Sweetie Belle’s (x Leo) First Litter at 11 Weeks Old:

Kit 1: 5 lb 1.9 oz
Kit 2: 5 lb 8.1 oz
Kit 3: 5 lb 15.6 oz
Kit 4: 4 lb 14.2 oz
Kit 5: 5 lb 6.6 oz
Kit 6: 5 lb 14.2 oz
Kit 7: 5 lb 0.4 oz
Kit 8: 5 lb 8.2 oz
Kit 9: 4 lb 12.7 oz

Total Litter Weight: 48 lb 1.9 oz

Amount Gained: 5 lb 8.2 oz

Lola’s (x Starbuck) 2nd Litter at 7 Weeks Old:

Kit 1: 2 lb 14.9 oz
Kit 2: 3 lb 4.4 oz
Kit 3: 3 lb 2.7 oz
Kit 4: 3 lb 6 oz
Kit 5: 2 lb 11 oz
Kit 6: 3 lb 6 oz
Kit 7: 3 lb 4.2 oz

Total Litter Weight: 22 lb 1.2 oz

Amount Gained: 3 lb 12.7 oz

Serenity’s (x Leo) 1st Litter:

Kit 1: 2 lb 0.5 oz
Kit 2: 3 lb 5.6 oz
Kit 3: 2 lb 15.4 oz
Kit 4: 3 lb 1.5 oz
Kit 5: 3 lb 2.7 oz
Kit 6: 3 lb 1.6 oz
Kit 7: 3 lb 7.3 oz

Total Litter Weight: 22 lb 2.6 oz

Amount Gained: 4 lb 14 oz

Phoebe’s (x Leo) 3rd Litter:

Kit 1: 12.5 oz
Kit 2: 13.1 oz
Kit 3: 13.5 oz
Kit 4: 15.2 oz
Kit 5: 8.6 oz (runt)
Kit 6: 11.2 oz
Kit 7: 11.5 oz

Total Litter Weight: 5 lb 5.6 oz

Phoebe birthed 9 kits, 2 were fostered to Andromeda, one of which did not survive.

Andromeda’s (x Starbuck) 1st Litter:

Kit 1: 14.5 oz
Kit 2: 15.1 oz
Kit 3: 12.1 oz
Kit 4: 12.8 oz
Kit 5: 13 oz

Total Litter Weight: 5 lb 0 oz

Everyone seems on track for growth except for Phoebe’s runt and Kalia, which is to be expected.

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