Upon starting up colony #3 we suffered a few set backs. Even after doing everything correct for introducing the females they were just not compatible for colony life together. Two of the girls remained together and were bonding well when I came home and one of the does had gone to sleep and hadn't woken up. The bonded doe was beside herself and didn't understand why she was not waking up. It crushed me to lose my girl, Phoebe, but it broken my heart to see the pain the other girl was in after losing her as well. Poplar has since become her normal self and hopefully will find another match for her colony. We are sitting at 2 successful colonies at the moment still so I am eager to see where it leads!
Along with not getting the pens done not much else has been going on here at Milo & Me.
Yesterday while doing chores I let the younger three girls out in the pen to enjoy some outside time even with the heat. In doing so I decided to try to introduce Eadda and Ophelia to the group to see if they would accept them as part of their colony. To my surprise, they did! So I now have Alchemy (the head of the colony), Iris, Margo, Eadda and Ophelia as members of Colony #1. As of this morning, 9/2, all 5 girls had settled back into their multi level condo nicely and had made it together through the night without any battle wounds. I am hoping that with the close relation of the younger two to Alchemy they will be accepted permanently into the colony and they will be able to be moved into their new pen together.
With this big new step, we are making excellent progress towards a colony raised rabbitry!
All three does are settling in and becoming a family unit. Honey is still a little freaked out when one of the other girls touches her but I found her relaxing with the other two girls last night when I got home. Charley and Evey are inseparable for the most part and will lay and groom each other for hours. I have also noticed that if another girl goes near Charley, Evey will chase them off and sit next to him herself. The hierarchy is fascinating to me.
So far, so good! All three girls are doing well together still. My youngest girl will be added in around 10 weeks old I think... She is 6.5 now and still with her mom. By then she will be weaned and big enough to handle them all. I am still up in the air on holding back my little REW doe... she is turning out to look really nice type but is closely related to many of my herd.... I do not have any offspring from her mother or father yet though... so maybe she will stay, for a while anyways.
I will be adding on a third level this week hopefully and maybe even extending the side by one pannel. So it will be 3Wx2Lx3H instead of 2x2x2. Each pannel is 16"x16" which is why I want to go one more for width and eventually two more for height giving each girl their own individual level to escape to if they are not wanting to be near each other. I am still in the air on it all but planning as I go and learning as I go as well.
I may eventually try a couple of my other girls together in a different colony as well but not yet... I want to work with my Jr's first and focus on gettin gone established colony before attempting any others.
Here is the start (hopefully ) to my colony. I will be adding in one or two more does depending on if I decide to keep back the second girl or not, she's still too young to tell on type. Before then, I will have to add another level and will have to expand it once they start to get bigger as well but so far, so good.
The Colony Experience
Follow Milo & Me's adventure of creating a colony lifestyle for a more natural life for our rabbits. Since rabbits are sociable beings, we believe a rabbit colony is a way for them to live and to maintain a happy demeanor and overall health.