Friday, December 10, 2010

Meet Peppermint Our Angora Rabbit

Last year for Christmas we gave Tessa her own angora rabbit, and she named her Peppermint. She has been a wonderful addition to our rabbit herd, angora's really loves to be pampered and paid attention to.  They need to be thoroughly brushed at least once a week  they really love this ritual , and on nice days we let her out in the garden ...with constant supervision, so she can run and play while I'm working.  All the rabbits like to get out and stretch their legs, they run and leap in the air they're so happy.  One of my goals this Spring is to create a rabbit/chicken tractor, something so they can be safe and contained in, and yet free to eat grass and weeds, and dig in the dirt. I'm planning to rotate and share it with the chickens too.

Rabbits love to dig for roots, they like dandelion greens, and various other grasses and weeds.  We regularly pick good stuff for them to eat around the yard, and add it to to their diet.  I have had the opportunity to study rabbits in the wild, and what the like to eat.  Our mini rex's had some babies in the wild, and the ones not born in cages, but in the wild have survived.  We still have a wild one come every morning  to the rabbit hutches, and visits with them.

Peppermint got loose one time last year, we had a frantic search for her until dark.  In the morning thankfully I found her sitting under a tree with the wild rabbit right beside her.  I could tell she was glad to be found, and back home. This was a happy ending. 

We clip her angora fiber about every 3-4 months depending on the time of year.  So far I have not learned to spin it yet, so we've been gathering and saving her beautiful fur for the time when we will spin it, and knit hats, and scarves maybe even a sweater.   My daughter Tessa and I learned to knit over the holidays last year so we could make stuff with her fiber.  They say that you should be able to get enough fiber from one rabbit to knit a sweater every year.  Angora rabbits are a fun addition to a farm, we are planning to breed her this Spring, and will add one of her babies to our herd.

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