Saturday, March 21, 2009

Baby Detail

This week I had two does due. One was a REW F3 FA/NZ doe bred to a purebred REW buck, and the other was a Purebred REW doe bred to a Tort buck (Eva/Giacomo). The first litter went off without a hitch and that is the litter whose pictures I am including here, and the second resulted in one kit who arrived stillborn 4 days late. Eva herself will be clipped and bred again tomorrow, but Yvonne has 9 babies of her own to manage now, and she is feeding them all to bursting as a good mama should, LOL.

Once I saw that Yvonne was finished kindling I took her nestbox out of the cage and brought it inside. Below is the usual routine I follow after a litter has been born (in pictures!:)).

First I take a plastic container and line it with washcloths, and then I take each baby out of the nest, count it, and check for injuries or missing 'parts'. I leave the litter in the container until I am finished cleaning the nest.

I next remove all the wool and any soiled hay from the box. Here is the nest after all the babies have been removed, and their temporary home in the tupperware:)

Next all the wool is clipped into 1/4 in. lengths so that none of it wraps around baby legs or necks, cutting off circulation. I then hollow out a depression in the hay and place the wool into it, followed by the litter.

I next make sure that I label the nestbox with the doe's name since it will remain in the house alongside other litters for the first 3 weeks (going outdoors only for feeding), and the date of the birth with the number of babies born live/dead is recorded on the calendar:

Yvonne, like most of the NZ crosses here, is turning out to be a wonderful mother with an extraordinary milk supply. Here is a picture of the little group one day after birth. All 9 are thriving and doing well now:).

More again next time where I'll give an update on my NZ/FA cross breeding program which has been an interesting learning experience to say the least, LOL, This latest litter out of Yvonne (and the other Cross does that are coming up later) will represent the F4 generation, and hopefully a great new FA with competitive wool and fantastic body type:).

Have a great week!

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