White Squabs’ First Flight

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Here is Fifty. I think she’s a female.

The two white squabs have been living in the barn for a few weeks now, getting used to their new accommodations. They are fully feathered out at this point and have been handled regularly. Today while I was working outside, I decided to take them out of their cage to see what they would do.

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This is Fifty One. I think he’s a male.

Fifty and Fifty One as they are affectionately known, are very nice little birds. They were taken out and placed on top of their cage where they observed me with great interest as I took care of all my rabbit chores. As their courage built up, they hopped and flew around a bit, checking out the tops of the rabbit cages and pecking at spots on the windowsills.

DSC_0044I had purposely not fed them before letting them out and had only given them a small meal yesterday. I went over to see them every once in awhile to talk to them, pick them up or give them pets. Fifty is a little better with being picked up than Fifty One. Maybe it’s because she was the one who fell out of the nest a few weeks back.

DSC_0056After a little while they flew up to the door and hung out there, heads peeking out into the sunshine. It was very sweet to see two little white doves gracing the entryway.

DSC_0060 DSC_0070I was feeding the quail chicks when I heard and felt flapping wings near my head. The squabs had flown to the top of the chicken coop, attracted by the sounds of the other pigeons. I was a little worried. Would they come back down or keep exploring?

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You can barely see them against the sky

Thankfully after about five minutes they gracefully flew back into the barn and landed on top of their cage. They were very proud of themselves, shaking their tails and preening. I told them they were very good birds, very smart, and put them back into their cage with some food. Have I mentioned what awesome pets pigeons make?

Bunnies Move Out

DSC_0065The two first litters of the year are now seven weeks old and it’s time to move out!

Each group is now in their own tractor on lawn mowing/fertilizing duty. They will be moved each day to a new patch of grass and their mothers will finally have a break and some more room to themselves. Two hybrid bunnies have been sold, so there are six buns per tractor which is a good number. In about three weeks the bucks and the does will be separated out. From some preliminary sexing, I know that the hybrid litter is mostly does, but the sexes of the Californian litter are still unknown. I’ll probably flip them all over in the next few days to see what I have.

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Californian kits

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Hybrid kits

I also sexed the oldest Standard Rex litter today and we have four bucks and three does. Here’s one of the blue otter bucks.

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Sexing position

DSC_0087I also got a few pictures of the younger Rex litter, they are about three weeks old and at the very cute, cotton-ball stage. Bluefin is still growling every time I take them out, but I’ve been ignoring it and giving her an overdose of petting each time which has helped a lot. She’s such a bratty girl.

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Bluefin’s buns

The kit who I thought would be white has turned into sort of a tortoiseshell color. It has a tan topside, a white belly and white/greyish sides with a little grey dot on the nose. I’ve never seen a Rex this color before. Does anyone have any ideas?

DSC_0131 DSC_0129 Esther, Samphire and Tuna have all been bred again today so I’ll be expecting three more litters in a month. I’ll have purebred Rex, purebred Californians, and I bred Esther to Timmy for the first time, so there will be some Creme d’Argent/Rex hybrids. I’m excited to see how they turn out. Here’s hoping for some neat colors and coats.

After my last post about my struggles getting pedigrees for some of my rabbits, I reached out to another local breeder who was able to figure out Tuna’s pedigree for me, as she owns her parents now. One down, two to go! It’s so interesting to look back into her lineage, there are actually quite a few brokens in there. I wonder if she’ll ever throw any?

Back from the Cold

Hello! I haven’t been posting this week because I have been visiting my sweetheart in the cold, cold north again. He will soon be leaving to spend the summer reporting in Iqaluit, Nunavut and we wanted to spend some time together in case I can’t visit him there.

It’s a lot warmer in Yellowknife now than it was when we drove up in February, but it’s still not looking much like spring over there. Here’s the view from his apartment window:

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I went from this…

Brrrr! It’s good to be back home again. This trip my wonderful mom flew up from California to take care of everything on the farm for me, since I have a lot of baby animals right now. She did a fantastic job and I’m so grateful for her help. Thanks Mum!

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… To this!

I can’t wait to get back into the swing of things here. I have a lot of gardening to tend to and lots of creatures to manage. It’s going to be a busy summer!