Loretta’s nine kits are all alive and well, and spending most of their time doing what kits do…sleeping. This litter’s sire is Raylan, a very mellow and friendly white New Zealand buck. While Loretta isn’t as outgoing as Ava (a white NZ doe), she is reasonably tolerant of being handled and is a good mother. She fostered Waldo, also a white NZ, when Waldo was a kit and too small to compete with his 10 littermates. We’re happy to report that it’s impossible to tell which kit is Waldo now; all four of Ava’s white kits look nearly identical.
This kindling was different because Loretta didn’t want to use the nest box and kindled on the wire. She also lost a kit in an unfortunate accident right after birth. Otherwise, she’s been her typical attentive, mothering self – she feeds her kits during the day and she’s careful to gather them together under her if they’re spread out in the nest. Loretta also doesn’t mind her kits being handled, though she does check on them afterward. We hope this litter inherits Raylan’s sunny personality and calm demeanor.
Ava apparently had a false pregnancy, haystaching and making a lovely nest. She really didn’t look large enough to be pregnant, and she didn’t seem as uncomfortable as Loretta did in the days immediately preceding kindling day. We kept her in a kindling cage just in case, though. She’s been rebred (to Sirius, a Silver Fox) and should kindle around 5/20, so she’ll go back out on pasture for a few more weeks to enjoy fresh air, birdsong, and greens. Maybe even sun if it reappears someday. Before long, she’ll have her own litter again, too, and we look forward to seeing what interesting colors we may get from the Ava/Sirius combo.