On Saturday M and I spent the greater part of the afternoon reupholstering, if you will, the bottom of Gunga and Socorro’s hutch. The girls’ former owner used wide wire mesh to enable the hutch’s use as a “rabbit tractor”. A rabbit tractor is a contraption that can be placed directly on fresh grass, so the rabbits can freely graze, but with enough wire that they cannot tunnel out. Unfortunately, the wire used for our hutch was far too wide to raise above the ground as it was the perfect size for bunny limbs to fall through. I am certainly a fan of the rabbit tractor idea and would like to use one seasonally, but a Western Oregon November brings LOTS of rain and wet saturated ground…conditions not ideal for keeping healthy rabbits. So with a little sweat and ingenuity M and I replaced the hutch bottom with the recommended 1″ x 1/2″ welded wire mesh. And it is cool stuff! Now that the hutch is raised off the ground with mesh flooring, all the droppings fall right out where they are easily gathered and chucked into the compost pile. It’s the most sanitary way to go and the rabbits seem happy indeed. It must be great to be able to hop around freely and not sit in your own excrement (CFOs, take note). The draw back is that the loose hay and veg also slide easily through the mesh when so inclined so a better hay-holding device is in the works.
Over the weekend I also assembled a 30″ x 36″ wire mesh cage and have another not-yet-assembled model waiting in the garage. I am really hoping to incorporate at least one of those cages into a hutch/shelter this weekend. Because we need a boy! Those girls are eating lots of food and are no nearer to producing babies. Cute as they are, they need to start paying rent soon(hear that, ladies?).
And a side note: I plan on going into more detail about our rabbit housing choices and setup in the future. I would love to hear what has worked out for other folks (and what has not).