Thursday, April 17, 2008

Here are the gang born March 29th. That makes them 19 days old. Eyes are open, nibbling at the hay, they are starting to explore their enclosure. I added a water and feed container this morning so they can start sampling those as well.

One is very, very small. I have been holding a few of the kits back at feeding time to give it time to get it's fair share. Once it gets a head start I put the rest of the kits in with the doe so all can feed.

I have been reviewing the last kits my deceased red doe had in January. I am still trying to decide if I will keep any from those births or not. I opted not to sell any of them at all. I wanted to see how they would come along once they were older. I am close to deciding, but this weekend will probably be the final decision.

For pet spinning, Warren is coming along nicely. I was able to separete Warren into grade A & B fiber. One batch of his fiber had a great deal of guard hairs in it. It has a high prickle factor so that is grade B. At the bottom of the bag was a smaller batch that was mostly undercoat. Fairly soft, but still has a few guard hairs. That was grade A. He is 2/3 rds done. I need to finish him up soon. I have an order for Toby & Reva that will arrive shortly. They are standard poodles.

My order for Tussah silk and Tencel arrived this week. I need to get on the stick and get my dying done. Hopefully the weather will hold. We have had so much wind this week and it is supposed to continue into the weekend. It looks like it will rain, but so far nothing.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Lots of news. Some good and some bad. First the good.

The DFW FiberFest was a great success for me. I meet some wonderful people and other vendors. I sold much more than I anticipated. I had heard mixed reviews on this event so I wasn't sure if I wanted to be a vendor, but I am glad I tried it out. I didn't bring any of my prime angora fiber. I am saving that for me. Now I am going to spend the next 2 weeks dying and carding to catch up my inventory.

I was also able to advertise my core business, spinning pet hair. Several people brought samples of their pets fur to be spun. I even had one very nice lady bring me a big bag of her pet's hair to me at the show. We sat and discussed specifics while I spun a sample of it to take home to show her family. "Warren" is now drying in a basket. This fur is very important since he passed away several years ago.

I was so busy preparing for this show I haven't written on the rabbits at all. Two does gave birth, March 29th, each having 11 kits. So much for any fostering ideas. The ermine doe had no problems at all, but my best red doe developed a prolapsed uterus. It was awful.

She successfully had all the kits in the nest. When I checked on her in the morning she was pulling fur. I looked in on her 45 minutes later and saw she had given birth, but she had way too much blood on her and she was just sitting in the corner in distress.

I put her down since I didn't want her to suffer by slowly bleeding to death. I tried bottle feeding the kits, but I lost them all by the 5th day. I have never had success with such young kits on a bottle. I can mange a good survival rate if they are about 10 days, but not newborns.

The ermine is doing well and so are her kits. The smallest in her litter did not make it past 2 days so she is nursing 10 kits now. It looks like a nice assortment of ermines, fawns, light torts and maybe a red.