Monday, April 27, 2009

Various updates

The 3 bred does, Brandy, Laci & Sugar yesterday all palpated positive. I'm so glad! Hoping for larger litters this time around. I had palpated them a few days ago and didn't feel anything, so I was a little nervous.

Clara & Daisy got bred yesterday. I plan on breeding Tatianna & Jenny or Kaylee. I can only do two more does right now, since my baby cages will be full then if all take (plus I have my two current litters). Clara was bred to Striper (my old faithful buck!) just because I need to get a litter out of her to get her going (she has given me the *hardest* time and she's a year old now). Daisy is 7 months old and was more than ready to breed, so I bred her to Brant. Should be some PRETTY babies!! They are half siblings . . .didn't even think about it :).

Tatianna will probably be bred to Kaden just because I need to get a litter out of her before she gets older. Jenny will probably be bred to Brant. If I breed Kaylee (probably won't though), I'm not sure who she will be bred to.

My cousin picked up my new bunny yesterday in Springfield, IL from . . . Sara Kitsemble :)! Sara was on her way home to Wisconsin from a show and my cousin was picking up/transporting a horse for someone. So, it worked out really well! The new doe is Kitsemble's Sarabeth. She's a sable with 2 legs. Sarabeth is gorgeous and has the cutest face! I think she will add a lot to the pointed whites. Seeing her great condition (even though her fur is molty), gives me hope that the PenPals will continue to work for the buns, as Sara feeds PenPals as well.

Pictures to come soon!


Friday, April 24, 2009

Been awhile . . .

Wow, it's been awhile since I posted anything on here . . . sorry! I've been busy this week doing medical research and designing a website.

There's not too much to report with the bunnies anyways.

Kristen's "pink" baby looks like a pointed white. What color pointed? I'm not sure yet. But, I see a small amount of color coming in on the tail (first spot to notice it typically).

Totsie's babies eyes are all opening and they are getting to the really cute, interactive age :). The little chocolate is a ST chocolate steel. I can't tell if any of the lilacs are steels yet.

I bought a bath tub/shower scrubber on a pole to scrub the trays of my cage system off and get that nasty brown crusties off of it. It seems to work good. Just use a little white vinegar (like I did with the other trays anyways) and scrub it off. I only got the top tray done today and will work on the other one sometime.

The weather has finally been warm and beautiful this week, so the barn has been completely open. Very nice. This is the first week of weather that actually feels like spring :)!

Maybe I can get some pictures uploaded to the website of the bunnies that I took a couple weeks ago. Maybe even a few pictures of everything that's finally turning green! It's getting beautiful again :). This picture is from about 2 weeks ago and it's SO much greener now.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Working with Colors

I had someone email me asking questions in regards to breeding "colors." I thought they asked some good & interesting questions, so I figured I would put my response on the blog with the general question that was asked.

"I noticed you started in the reds and oranges. Why did you get out of them?"

I only sold out of the reds & oranges because I wanted to focus more on the chocolates & lilacs. I had too many rabbits (had around 50 holes at the time) and it was getting overwhelming. At the time, I was still in high school and had other things to deal with, so I figured it was best to just focus on one color at the time. The reds, oranges & tris are GORGEOUS colors and I would really like to get back into them. I hope to get some reds later this year and start working with them again. The reds are one of my most favorite colors and probably always will be :).

"I have a buck who has orange in his pedigree, I just need to get a doe to breed him to now."

You’ll want to get a doe who has orange, or tort (and is an agouti color herself) in her close background to breed to your REW buck. If there is orange way back where in the pedigree, it doesn’t necessarily mean that he will carry orange. So, if you don’t have the color you want to work with, it can be tricky getting it. Especially when it is a color that is rare & recessive.

"Is there such a thing as an orange pointed white?"

The genetics of an orange pointed white (“technically” referred to as a flame or red point) are kind of a debate. That color doesn’t exist typically and there is debate as to whether you could even get a pointed white that color. The cross with the pointed white gene (c(h)) and the non-extension gene may not create red points/may not be possible.

"Why did you choose to work with the colors you work with?"

I chose to work with chocolates & lilacs because they were (& somewhat are still) rare out here in the states. Especially chocolates & lilacs with GOOD type AND color. The first chocolates I got had horrible type and horrible color. So, I had to bring nice chocolate & lilac stock in from a couple states away to get a good start in the chocolates. It has paid off, since I am one of the main breeders with nice chocolates and lilacs right now. A true, deep, colored chocolate is one of my favorite colors as well, so that was a plus to working with them. *If you're interested in seeing pictures of our progress, I have it laid out on our about us page*

I decided to start working with the pointed whites because I like the variety, but mainly they are extremely rare out here. When I first got them, 2 ½ years ago, there was ONE other breeder who had them. There are several more now, because I’ve started working with them. All these other breeders who are working with them got their start from my herd of pointed whites. The pointed whites need a lot more work than the chocolates & lilacs did, but they are coming along well. The pointed whites are also a bit interesting & challenging to breed as far as the genetics go. Shadeds are an interesting variety to work with!

"Do you have any tips for someone wanting to start working with rare colors?"

I would try to find a rare variety that at least some breeder works with already. That way you can get good starter stock in that particular color already and go from there and develop your own line. It’s MUCH easier to start with the color you want to work with, than to try and get that color through animals that carry it or *might* carry it.


Babies, Breedings & For Sale

Kristen kindled yesterday evening and she had 2 babies. Tiny litter, unfortunately. I really hope my next does due who have been on PenPals for a good month and a half now will have bigger litters. I never used to have small litters like this or Totsie's. But, with Kristen it may be the buck - Deckles is an OLD guy :).

Kristen has a "pink" and a lilac. Good colors!! I am so hoping the "pink" is a pointed white. A lilac pointed white would be awesome! I've been wanting to do this breeding since I bought Deckles, so I am glad that there is at least a couple live babies.

Totsie's babies are 3 lilacs and a chocolate. None of them are agoutis though.

Tatianna & Clara didn't take again. I think they reabsorbed because they did palpate positive. I am about fed up with them. This is the fourth try for Clara and I think third for Tatianna. I cut their food down to maybe 1/4 of what they normally get and am just going to breed them to whoever. I just have to get a litter from them before they get older (they are almost a year old as it is!). They are both really nice does, but I don't know how many more tries I will give them.

I bred Sugar to Brantini yesterday. I will probably let Sugar go after this litter. She's going to be hard to sell. She definitely has to go to the perfect home and that's why she has a high price tag on her. Because I lost Rose earlier this year and Champagne is my only Sugar baby, I would really like to have another one or two to replace Sugar. It would be a shame if something happened to Champagne and I don't have anything to replace Sugar, since she has been such a vital part of my herd.

I am going to be breeding Tara & Jenny over the next couple days. Daisy & Kaylee will probably be bred the end of this month (they are already almost 7 months old). I don't want to have breeding problems like I have with Clara & Tatianna because I wait too long to breed them.

We've had some gorgeous weather the past couple days, so I took a bunch of pictures of the buns yesterday. I'll work on getting the good pictures up.

I've added several to the for sale list, but haven't had a chance to update the site yet, so I will just post it here.



Bucks –

Silent Spring’s Kaden – Broken Chocolate Chestnut Agouti Sr. Buck. Nice buck, would like to see stronger shoulders and better HQ’s, but he throws great babies. Proven breeder. $45

Alpine’s Simin – Smoke Pearl Sr. Buck. Nice, SMALL buck. He’s a tiny little guy! Would like to see better depth on him. Proven breeder. $40

Does –

Prominent’s Totsie – Gold Tip’d Chocolate Steel Sr. Doe. Very nice doe! Will most likely be available after her current litter is weaned. $65

Milkhouse’s Jenny – Chestnut Agouti Sr. Doe. Very nice doe with 2 legs. Will most likely be available after her next litter (I plan on breeding her in a few days). $75

Hoppin’s Sugar Dust – Broken Opal Sr. Doe. Very nice doe who throws outstanding babies! Will most likely be available after her litter is born & weaned. $75


Bucks –

Hoppin’s TD2 – Black Jr. Buck (8 weeks old). Very promising little buck. Show/Brood/4-H $35

Does –

Hoppin’s LJ2 – Black Pointed White Jr. Doe (8 weeks old). Very promising doe. Her dam is a Desurra doe. $50



Sunday, April 12, 2009

4 and counting

The first doe due this weekend kindled this morning, Totsie. She made a beautiful nest and had 4 plump little babies in there. All lilac colors . . . hoping for a lilac chin in there. We'll see though.

Kristen made a nice nest in her box also and I expect her to have her babies right on her due date - tomorrow. Tatianna also made a nest in her box. Clara hasn't done much, but hopefully she'll make her nest in the box too.

Brandy's, Laci's & Tara's litters are 8 weeks old, so it was time for them to be weaned. I separated them all from their mom's. I mainly did it though because Brandy & Laci wanted to be bred BAD. Laci had pulled a couple handfuls of fur in her cage this morning, so I figured why not breed them. They are both in great condition. So, I bred Brandy to Brantini & Laci to Deckles.

I decided to keep one of Laci's babies - the buck. Unfortunately, he's a broken pointed, but he has a really nice body. So, I figured it would be worth it to grow him out and see how he develops.

That's about all for now!


Monday, April 6, 2009

Tennessee Mud & Mudslide

Tennessee Mud reminds me of a solid chocolate junior buck I kept from a litter I had in December 2006. That buck's name was Mudslide. He was everything I had hoped for in a buck for my chocolate program and he was a gorgeous, deep chocolate color. He had a massive head on him and was overall very nicely typed.

I got a couple litters out of him and they were very nice. I did keep one of his babies, but unfortunately I didn't keep more. There was one buck, a broken lynx, out of one of his litters that I regret selling. He was just like Mudslide, only a broken lynx. He had the monster head Mudslide had and all. That buck even went on to win 3 legs and become a Reg. GC.

But, when Mudslide was a young senior/barely a year old, I had to put him down. It was a hard decision and one that took awhile. His nose was wet all the time and I couldn't risk my whole herd if he was sick with something. I had treated him with an antibiotic, moved him to a different area (hoping it was allergies or something) and it never cleared up. After a couple months of having him in quarantine, I decided the best decision was to put him down. It was a huge disappointment. But, it is one of those things that goes along with raising animals. . . tough choices, hard decisions.

Tennessee Mud reminds me of Mudslide a lot, except that he is a chocolate chestnut agouti. Solid chocolates, especially chocolates that have a very deep chocolate color, like Mudslide, are so pretty. But, a solid chocolate agouti is also so gorgeous. I don't know which one I'd prefer. I have hardly any agoutis in my herd, so I guess an agouti color for a buck would be nice (since I rarely have an agouti buck!). Tennessee Mud has that huge, monster of a head and the smooth body that Mudslide had.

I think Mud does have an overall better body than Mudslide, in that he is deeper in body, but we shall see for sure as he matures. I hope, by God's grace, Mud will be that gorgeous chocolate colored buck that can be used so much in my herd.

If he does turn out nice to be a gorgeous buck, I'll be sure to keep more babies from him, instead of regretting having nothing from Mudslide. I have learned that lesson the hard way a couple times, even recently . . . with the losses of Rose Dust & Chocolate Rum (who was Mudslide's sister). Thankfully I do have one baby from Chocolate Rum that is a great replacement.

Some comparison pictures:

Mudslide at 3 weeks old ~

Tennessee Mud at 3 weeks old ~

I can't find any pictures of Mudslide as a junior, but here are these two pictures of him as a young senior. He was so cute!


New Juniors

Well, I finally settled on a name for each of the juniors I'm keeping from my current litters. Got the website updated today with their new pictures also.

While I was at it, I got some new pictures of Kadence. She's looking good! I like her a lot - very smooth & balanced.

The names are . . . . . . . .

Buck . . . Hoppin's Tennessee Mud

Doe . . . Hoppin's Daphnie

Oh, and I suppose I'll put a few pictures of Kadence here as well.

I was waiting for the weather to stay nice and warm, so I could keep the tarps on the barn open and get some good pictures of all the bunnies with natural lighting. But, that idea has gone out the window for now. It seems like we've had 5 cold or thunderstorm filled days for every 1 or 2 nice, sunny days :). It is sunny today, but definitely not warm! So different than California's springtime! Plus, now, all the buns are blowing their coats due to the feed change, so they aren't picture worthy anyways.