I was carrying some wood past the house with my friend, and paused to pick up some tools off the deck. Through the open door, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a brown…shape passing the rocking chair. It might have hopped.
Things I never thought I would say out loud: “Uh, I think there’s a rabbit in my house.”
I dropped the wood and stepped in, and the very-definitely-a-rabbit leapt up on the windowsill and hunched under an arm of aloe vera. My first thought of course was for the camera. It was so cute, guilty and terrified. I don’t know how I got in and I don’t know how to get out! I don’t have any answers.
It proceeded to hide under the stove and in the boot tray and I got pictures of blurry streaks passing piles of stuff (it’s canning season). He didn’t do so well on the hardwood floor. Zero traction.She was happiest with hiding under the bench by the door in the firewood. This is familiar stuff. A little “half-growed” bunny. Petrified and adorable.
I don’t even see bunnies close to the house that often. A rabbit on the porch is an amusement. It’s not like they’re nosing around all the time, waiting for a chance. A chipmunk, that wouldn’t surprise me at all, the little opportunists, but I guess that’s happened.
Where I do see rabbits, every day, many times, is with the chickens. I saw Galahad chase one out of the grass. Coming through.
Today another (or maybe the same unlucky) rabbit got itself stuck in a chickery. Foxy and her chicks were already in there, in their box for the night. Four heads poking out from her watching the rabbit pace (it figured it out just before I got back with camera). What’s going on out there!?
I have a broody hen (she’s lost her marbles, didn’t get the winter memo), so I built her a new special broody box for her own comfort and safety, out of hardware cloth, with a plywood base. A lobster trap meets a mailbox:First I put in a piece of foil, to reflect her heat on her eggs.Then cardboard.Then a “nest” of hay. A clutch of eggs (her eggs-I actually did the transfer very quickly from where she was setting in the main coop)A wall of hay bales around her, liberal hay underneath her box, and canvas for drafts and darkness (now it’s a covered wagon). There she is, settling in, front “mailbox” door shut. The first thing she did was throw a tantrum and knock over her dishes, but then she saw her eggs and simmered down.Naturally I had the usual helpers, doing anything in the GH:
Is that…Aluminum foil?
All done and closed up. Completely safe from any ground predators, just like the birds that get shut in their coops at night.
Now she gets breakfast in bed, in her prairie schooner. I plan to make a series of reusable kennels, for the broody hens next year. The cardboard box has many limitations. This is the right size for the first few days after hatching, when the chicks start to eat, but don’t go very far, and then they will go into the chickery after that.Snow White and her two white chicks lounging in front of the broody kennel installation on a warm day.
The temperature dropped over the holidays to “very cold!”, and I brought her and her mailbox into the house. She lives in the mud room now. I candled her eggs and they seem to be alive.
If she’s so determined to sit on eggs in the winter, well, we’ll try and give her a shot at success.
My garden starts are taking over our tiny house. A few have gone out, but more are still inside, and have just been potted up. This is the maximum volume of starts in the house – peak seedlings. The bulk of them are due now to go out to the greenhouse, and then the starts will steadily be on their way out the door.
Some of the fastest-growing tomato varieties have grown legs in just a couple days (you know who you are, Ropreco). It seems I just can´t avoid getting leggy tomatoes, unless I adjust seeding dates by variety – not sure I´m that dedicated.
I can now announce the newspaper pots a success. They hold up just fine. I´m totally going to do this every year. However, it´s the slightly stiffer (or more impregnated with coloured printing ink) advertising paper that comes in the middle of the paper that works best- I made a couple with normal newspaper and they sort of melted.