Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Time to Build a Bunny House

Painting the French doors
The angoras have been here since last September, living in a barricaded section of my carport. It was a busy spring and started into a busy summer, but I had to set aside time to build a more permanent facility for them. The barn I used back when I had 20 to 30 rabbits is in bad shape, so I decided to use some found materials to make a little barn for them here at the shop.

The French doors were stockpiled back when we were going to build a shop out in front of the old farmhouse. There is also some lumber left from that project and friends Peter and Kathleen gave me some corrugated plastic awhile back. Aside from some hinges and a little hardware, plus some paint, I had everything I needed to put up a little building.

The support for the back wall of the bunny house
This old grape vine fence is still sturdy, although the ancient vines have finally died off except for one at the far end. My cousin Amy helped me put boards across to support the three doors that made up the back wall of the shed.

Back wall

Side walls
By using hooks and eyes to attach the four doors used as the side walls to the back, I was able to put them up by myself, one at a time during a quiet day at the shop.

Front doors of the bunny house
The front doors are made of old shutters we used to use back when I did a lot of festivals. They made great, if heavy, displays. The center piece is an old folding door. I used hinges to put this part together, so friend Kathleen came over to help with that. Amy came again to give me a hand in putting up the long rafters for the roof.

The roof
I had to do a little fudging on the roof, as the plastic pieces weren't quite long enough. But an extra board, painted white, made up the difference at the back. I also painted the plastic to keep it a little cooler inside the rabbit house. If it gets too warm, I can paint the panes of glass, but so far putting a tarp on the sun side in the morning has kept the rabbits comfortable.

Rabbits in residence
The rabbits seem happy with the situation so far. I close the doors at night to make sure they are safe from dogs or foxes and open things up during the day.

Knightley visits with German Angora Quark
The exercise pen gives some extra protection and a place for the rabbits to get out and nibble green stuff and romp. They have been missing their exercise time because of the rain and all of my working time. Now that the rabbits are at the shop, I can let one out in the pen and he can spend the morning nibbling and hopping around, or just laying on the grass. After lunch I let the other one out. Two boys out together doesn't work very well, at least not with Quark. He's a pushy fellow.

Hen and her two chicks
The hen that was setting on her clutch of seven eggs managed to hatch out two of them. I don't know if the weather got too hot or if the rooster wasn't doing his job properly, but the other eggs weren't fertile. Mama hen has learned to be careful of cats and other predators and so far she has done well with them. She takes them around the yard, teaching them all the things they need to know about the big world.

Rose and baby Clara
Clara is getting big and is still a lot of fun. She has started grazing with her mama in the mornings and evenings but still finds plenty of time to play with us. Clara loves to climb and is found in high places all around the farm, including atop friend Peter's shoulders!

What I'm spinning: hand dyed angora from the rabbits
What I'm knitting: Finishing Reyna shawl and starting the Chinese Tile scarf
What I'm crocheting: Everything is still hibernating
What I'm reading: The Sweetgum Ladies Knit for Love by Beth Pattillo
Current sounds & sights for spinning along: Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries on Netflix

3 comments:

Barbara Sartain said...

Fabulous idea! Chickens, goats, bunnies, dogs whats next?

Pegleg said...

Just love the new bunny house.

Pegleg said...

Just love the new bunny house.