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Nesting box for rabbits

Discussion in 'Birthing, Weaning and Raising Young Rabbits' started by Stina, Dec 19, 2017.

?

Best type of nesting box

  1. Wooden

    2 vote(s)
    66.7%
  2. Metal

    1 vote(s)
    33.3%
  1. Dec 19, 2017
    Stina

    Stina Just born

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    I was just wondering what type of material majority of nesting boxes are made from. I’ve seen metal & wood types but because my does have started chewing at their wooden cage, I wanted some advice on how I should build or buy their nesting boxes...any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks
     
    Baymule likes this.
  2. Dec 19, 2017
    promiseacres

    promiseacres True BYH Addict

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    My favorite is a hard plastic I bought from a local vendor, very nice to disinfect. But most of mine are wood, removable bottoms. They chew but not too much to destroy.
     
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  3. Dec 19, 2017
    Baymule

    Baymule Herd Master

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    When I had rabbits, I built a wooden box, no top, with hardwire cloth bottom. The wire bottom let pee pass through, because when feeling threatened, does will pee on their babies. With a solid bottom, they get ammonia pneumonia and die. Not always, but it does happen. I had all wire hanging cages. On cold nights, I put an aluminum auto clamp on light over the nest box, the light bulb kept the babies warm.
     
    Stina likes this.
  4. Dec 19, 2017
    Pastor Dave

    Pastor Dave True BYH Addict

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    The disinfection is an issue, so plastic or metal is best. Like Promiseacres, I use wood. If you use the same box repeatedly on the same doe, not as big a deal.

    Once you clean out a wooden box, I hit mine with a little sand paper. You can also spray down inside with bleach water.
     
    Stina likes this.
  5. Dec 20, 2017
    Tale of Tails Rabbitry

    Tale of Tails Rabbitry Exploring the pasture

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    Wire but.... We had about the same type of nesting box that Baymule described for some years, now we only use them in the cages of the weaned buns with hay to insulate them from wind in the winter. My husband got a bug to make two compartment brood cage about two years ago and we did use a nesting box with it, and then this year he got a bug to renovate it with a wired drop nesting box. I like it so, so, so much better! I have lost more kits than I liked to exposure that were accidentally dragged out with the mother onto the wire with the wood/wire combo box, even happened with the two compartments but more rarely did I lose one because we had a warming pad on the nesting side and they usually survived until I found them.

    The drop nest works with the natural instincts of the doe better, I think, and if a kit gets dragged out, it is more likely for it to wiggle around and fall back into the nest to find its siblings and snuggle. The only downside is that the drop box is more exposed to the wind and cold on all sides, if your cages are outside like ours, and needs to be well insulated in the winter. We have used cardboard and paper bags (sytrofoam and old vinyl signs also would work on the outside) and even added a warming pad fixed to the underside. We replace whatever was on the bottom each time and the warming pad gets cleaned between kindlings. However, we are in the southeastern United States so our winters are wild swings of temperatures and weather (as we just had a dump of 12-inches a couple of weeks ago--seriously crazy!) but certainly our winters are not as harsh and long term as in the northern states. Our greater concern here is more about heat in the summer.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2017
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  6. Dec 21, 2017
    Stina

    Stina Just born

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    Thank you for all the replies! I live in Hawaii & our winters are getting into the 60’s at its coldest. My does are New Zealand/Californian & about 5 months old now, so I still have some time yet till I can breed them. Ive been told different things on breeding age & how to provide them with a nesting box. So I’m super glad that you guys have given me good advice from your own experiences!
     
    promiseacres likes this.
  7. Dec 21, 2017
    Pastor Dave

    Pastor Dave True BYH Addict

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    Well, if you have any more questions, just fire away. Of course your experiences with rabbits in Hawaii is going to be different than ours here in the continental states, but you can adapt our suggestions to meet your climate and environment.
     
    promiseacres and Stina like this.
  8. Dec 22, 2017
    DutchBunny03

    DutchBunny03 Loving the herd life

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    In cold climates, wood is the only good option unless your rabbitry is indoors and climate-controlled. Metal and plastic are better for cleanliness, but they are way too cold to keep kits alive.