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Bay Colony Farm
Fibers and Rabbits For Sale at Bay Colony Farm
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Helen
Another Day at Bay Colony Farm
Thursday, March 16, 2006
I have two really good little boys
Mood:  energetic
Now Playing: Paul McCartney and Wings "Band on the Run"
Topic: Rabbits

Since last Spring, my youngest son Nate has been a big helper when taking care of the rabbits. At the age of 4, he is in charge of filling the water bottles at the bunny condo. At least three of the cages are rather high, and he has trouble getting the filled bottles back into the bottle holders, but he doesn't give up. Cal has only started taking an interest in the rabbits, and wanting to help feed. He has to help with the bottles in the barn first, and then I allow him to fill a couple of feed dishes. Both boys get 25 cents per bottle. Nate did enough bottles in three weeks last September that he made over $13.00!

Anyway, I had Nate outside with me, feeding and watering the bunnies. Again, he was working on filling the four bottles at the bunny condo. I can usually fill three bottles to his one, but hey, every little bit helps. So, I walk over to the bunny condo to start feeding the boys, and Nate is standing on the deck, with a sad look on his face. When I asked what was wrong, he started to cry and tell me that Twist had bitten his finger! Even after having his finger bitten, he filled Twist's bottle, and washed off his finger, even though it was bleeding slightly. I think it hurt more than than the shock of being bitten. Now, Twist is a gentle rabbit. But I suspect that Nate's finger looked a bit like a carrot and Twist was hungry. I held Nate and told him that Twist is a good boy and wouldn't hurt him on purpose. And then I was able to convince him to not only pet Twist, but to also fill Twist's food dish with pellets. Nate did both things well, and without complaint. I even had him smiling while he was filling the food dish. I'm one to believe that if you fall off a horse, you get right back up on it and tell it who is in charge!

The Accused:




And the Victim:


All better now (yes, he is holding up his middle finger, but I swear, he has no idea what it means, or that it even means anything). ;-)


Posted by baycolonyfarm at 4:34 PM EST
Friday, February 24, 2006
Thanks to Mamacate
Mood:  chillin'
Now Playing: Madonna "Frozen"
Topic: Rabbits

I saw this on her blog so I took the test.




You Are Kermit



Hi, ho! Lovable and friendly, you get along well with everyone you know.

You're a big thinker, and sometimes you over think life's problems.

Don't worry - everyone know's it's not easy being green.

Just remember, time's fun when you're having flies!

The Muppet Personality Test


Kermit is my favorite Muppet anyway. I saw the very first Sesame Street episode when I was two. Yep, I just gave my age away. ;-)


It's another cold day out there. We are back to plastic bowls for the rabbits for their drinking water, and extra food in their dishes. This is the second Friday of wind, so I have to watch for downed branches again. Hopefully, we won't have any problems again this weekend, but it does mean extra water for the rabbits to keep them hydrated.

Speaking of which, here is my boy Twist! Isn't he handsome? He is up for registration in April, having been shorn a month ago. He was being shy for this picture, not to mention that it's warmer in his condo unit than it is in the caged section. :)



Posted by baycolonyfarm at 5:48 PM EST
Saturday, February 18, 2006
Things always happen for a reason
Mood:  chillin'
Now Playing: Billy Joel "Uptown Girl"
Topic: Rabbits
I was pretty bummed out when I had to make the difficult decision to not vend at the SPA this weekend. Although I made the decision at the end of December, and had very valid reasons then, this weekend they became even more apparent.

Those of us out here on the East Coast have been dealing with some serious wind the past 24 hours. Yesterday lots of trees and branches came down, causing power outages in various parts of the northeast and even 4 people died due to the wind.

We were very lucky here at BCF; only some tree branches down, and nothing landed on the barn (thank goodness!). However, when you have wind like this, and temps that drop into the teens like it did this afternoon, the rabbits need a lot of water. And the only way to make sure they get a lot of water is to be there to give it to them. I've made several trips out to the barn today to refill water bowls (the water bottles froze last night). And while I have some awesome rabbit sitters, it doesn't replace being here, ready to go out at a moments notice. I was able to keep track of any downed tree branches through the night, and keep my rabbits hydrated, which is so important in the winter. If I had been away, that would have been a real concern for me.

But I'm happy to say that the rabbits are doing fine. They've had plenty of water to drink and have been eating well (when rabbits can't drink, they don't eat, therefore they loose weight which is hard for them to put back on in the cold weather). I feel that my decision back in December had double meanings, although I didn't know it then. Like they say, when a door closes, a window opens. :)


Posted by baycolonyfarm at 5:40 PM EST
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
What's that I hear?
Mood:  celebratory
Now Playing: Enya "Amarantine"
Topic: Rabbits

Yes, it's me on Caroline Morse' podcast The Fibercast. Caroline interviewed me about German Angora rabbits, and our small farm here. I had a blast doing the interview and thank Caroline for thinking of me when it came to rabbits. :) Check out the podcast and Caroline's blog, which has lots of great fiber arts related information on it.
If you don't have an IPod or similar device, you can download the podcasts on to your computer and listen there. Enjoy! :)

And I'll give a quick update on my husband; the first clot is going away, unfortunately, the other clots appear to be spreading, so we are still playing the waiting game. But thank you to everyone that wrote wishing him well. That means a great deal to both of us!

Now, how about this weather? I love it! In fact, this whole winter has been pretty good. When you have animals, and they are outside animals, any winter without zero and below temps is a blessing. While I've had to use water bowls for the majority of the winter, I have had times when I've been able to switch back to water bottles. Today was one of those days. When the temps don't go below freezing at night, that is a good time to start using water bottles again. It provides the rabbits with a continuous water supply, and therefore they are healthier.
Not that I can complain; there haven't been many weeks that I've had to make multiple trips out to the barn to refill water bowls like the last two winters. Any winter with temps like we've had is a good one (yes, I can hear the skier's pitching a fit, and I understand, having been a skier at one time). But when you have animals, this really is a good thing.

What's even better? The air smells like Spring today. :)

Posted by baycolonyfarm at 5:04 PM EST
Friday, January 27, 2006
It's.........Banana time!
Mood:  mischievious
Now Playing: Tears for Fears
Topic: Rabbits

Can't touch this!

Sorry, but I had MC Hammer's "U Can't Touch This" running through my head yesterday when I was feeding the rabbits due to the silliness of the situation.

Some rabbits don't like bananas. They will give a piece of banana a sniff, and then turn around and go to the other end of the cage. Some think it's an o.k. treat, and others are practically in heaven with this special treat.

The ones that love it, really love it. In fact, they do something I call "the butt twitch". They are so happy eating banana, that their hind end muscles contract and their back end looks like it's twitching! It is really one of the funniest things about raising rabbits to see their butts twitching over some favorite food!

Back when I had a house trained angora rabbit named Jolson, his favorite foods were rice, cooked pasta, macadamia nuts (yes, my father used to buy whole jars of them JUST FOR JOLSON!), watermelon and bananas. Jolson never failed to show his appreciation to these "treats" (which were almost daily!) by butt twitching. But Jolson was no ordinary rabbit either. He spent his nights sleeping on my bed (with a litter box at one end), had a whole family room to play in when we were home, and used to travel with me almost every time I had to take longs trips. Jolson is the reason today that I have angora rabbits as I fell in love with him so many years ago, and he remains my favorite rabbit. He was so smart, that whenever we were cooking any type of pasta or rice, he grab his treat dish, which was a mayonnaise jar lid, bring it over to the doorway of the kitchen, and toss the lid into the kitchen to "remind" us that he was expecting some of what we were going to eat. This never failed. He either had an excellent sense of smell, or an uncanny ability to know just what we were cooking. Either way, Jolson was always given a lid full of what he wanted. And so show his appreciation, he'd sit there eating, with his butt twitching.

Jolson lived to be over 8 years old. and it was Jolson who gave me my love for angora rabbits. And while I no longer have a very spoiled little house trained rabbit, I do have a barn of some lovely animals, who provide wonderful fur for me, and lots of love.

Posted by baycolonyfarm at 8:39 AM EST
Updated: Friday, January 27, 2006 8:40 AM EST
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Snow and IAGARB certification
Mood:  cheeky
Now Playing: Frankie Valli
Topic: Rabbits
I've been home for a week now; one trip out on Sunday, but otherwise, housebound.

In that time, I've read *a lot* of books. I'm averaging one book every two days; thank goodness I save most of the paperback books I read; I have boxes of them. They are keeping my mind occupied, and I'm enjoying my down time immensely!

Yeterday was a medium sized snow storm. We got about 7 inches of snow. Here is a picture at the height of the storm.




And to get to the real part of this entry. Sunday was shearing day for certification for IAGARB. This means that we shear down the rabbits we want to try to register, and have it verified by another IAGARB member or a vet. Since I was really busy cleaning and shopping on Sunday, I did my shearing yesterday (allowable since I'm actually giving my rabbits *less* time to grow their wool). Samson's Twist 'N Shout was one of my choices for certification. Twist is a big baby when it comes to shearing; he's sweet and gentle, but wow, does he have gorgeous wool and a firm body! For the next 88 days, I'll feed him, try to keep him clean and on April 21st, he'll be evaulated by one of our IAGARB judges, then shorn by me and his wool will be weighed. If his wool weight makes 325 grams or more, and he passes the judges evaluation, then he'll be registered with IAGARB. Just think, 325 grams of wool in 89 days (because he wasn't shorn on Sunday, but Monday) is 11.44 ounces of wool!

Posted by baycolonyfarm at 8:26 AM EST
Updated: Tuesday, January 24, 2006 11:26 AM EST
Friday, November 11, 2005
You know you are nearing the end of warm weather watering when....
Mood:  lazy
Now Playing: Stevie Nicks "Leather and Lace"
Topic: Rabbits

You turn on the hose to fill water bottles by the barn and there are icicles coming out of the hose into the water bottles. :)

Yes, it is that cold outside. But the weather reports on NECN are saying that we should see temps in the upper 60's tomorrow.

I was planning on finishing up shearing today, but I've come down with a cold. A chilled-to-the-bone, shivering, sneezing, when-is-this-going-to-end kind of cold. Not even my Airborne seems to be working. Or if it is, I'd probably feel even worse.

So I'm going to hang out on the couch this afternoon (what is left of it), and sleep.

Maybe if I get really ambitious, I'll make some bunny coats for the rabbits that will be shorn sometime in the next week.


Posted by baycolonyfarm at 4:19 PM EST
Thursday, November 3, 2005
In Memory of Mac
Mood:  sad
Now Playing: The Cars "Drive"
Topic: Rabbits

Five years ago, I had the idea that I wanted to get into showing rabbits; not angoras, but rather mini-lops. So I purchased some mini-lops and did a few breeding's. I had one really successful litter, and Mac and Sparky were the result of that.

These two little brothers were partners in crime. Sparky stole the heart of my brother Luke, and Mac stole mine. Mac was as gentle as Sparky was fiery. They had lived in side by side cages since they were old enough to be separated. Mac loved to have his head and back rubbed. He was sable in color (it has been so long since I was interested in showing, that I forget the actual color name approved by the ARBA). Mac from the very beginning wanted my attention, and he got it. He was the last bunny fed every night, so that I could spend a bit more time with him.

I had figured that he was slowing down. He turned more slowly, and he didn't move with the bounce he once had, but he never failed to greet me at the cage door, not once, except for tonight.

I'll miss Mac, and I'm sure Sparky will too. He's gone to rabbit heaven, because if any little rabbit deserved it, it's Mac.

Good bye little guy. I'll miss you.

Posted by baycolonyfarm at 8:08 PM EST
Tuesday, August 16, 2005
Twist's Haircut
Mood:  a-ok
Now Playing: Blue Swede "Hooked On A Feeling"
Topic: Rabbits
I started shearing Twist on Sunday. This is as far as we got before he decided he was done. :) And sometimes there is no sense in fighting a rabbit who does NOT want to be on your lap. Besides, it was hot, so I wanted to give him a break. We'll finish the haircut up today, since it is much cooler.




Check out that crimp in his wool!

The clippers I use can get a lot closer than that, leaving a velvet-like coat, but this is what I prefer for right now, knowing that we'll start getting a few nights where it's in the 50's.

Posted by baycolonyfarm at 10:04 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, August 16, 2005 10:05 AM EDT
Friday, August 12, 2005
How is this for fur??
Mood:  chatty
Now Playing: Spinners "One of a Kind (Love Affair)"
Topic: Rabbits

I've had some people ask to see a picture of a German Angora in full coat. Since it has been so hot here, I'll post a picture of Samson's Twist, who has a 2 month coat on here. The rest of the rabbits here have much shorter coats.

Twist fathered a whole bunch of babies earlier this summer, which will be available for sale in October. With his body type and density, I have very high hopes for those babies!




He wasn't exactly thrilled with being on a slippery chair, so this was the best pose I could get out of him. But he's beautiful!

On another subject, I just love this song that is playing now. I relate it to music that I used to listen to as a kid while on vacation at my grandmothers, in Deptford (south Jersey), which is just outside of Philly.
It makes me happy just to hear it! :D And reminds me of many happy vacations as a child. Doesn't music have a powerful hold on so many of us?

Posted by baycolonyfarm at 7:36 PM EDT

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