Good news! Philly had her babies! She kindled four very plump healthy looking kits Saturday night.
Do you feel the “but” coming? But, she gave birth to them on the wire floor instead of in the beautiful and warm nest she built and so they died of exposure. That’s a big but. I often have people insist that solid floor hutches are the better way to go. In this case, it would not have saved the kits to have a solid floor either. Baby rabbits are born hairless and so the only things that keep them from freezing to death (even in the middle of summer) are: a nest filled with warm fur, warm milk, and body heat from one another in the nest. Without any ONE of these things, the kits usually die.
So there it is. I am starting breeding all over again. I will give Philly 48 hours after birth before breeding her. This time, Philly will be bred to our no-name Chestnut and Indigo will hopefully comply with being bred to Ibn. Toblerone will sit this one out. I already know he is a good breeder, but I have paired him with Philly many times and I do not want to pair him with Indigo. Toblerone is a self chocolate, recessive, and Indigo is a self lilac, double recessive. I have observed with my own rabbits and rabbits from other Rabbitries, that too many recessive color genes result in weaker rabbits. It is just an observation of course, and so has no real scientific fact to back it up, but my eyes are what I have to work with.
The wait begins again. At least I know my rabbits are willing to breed again after that horribly long and hot summer. Cross your fingers and hold your breath for litters born this time next month.