BCBunnies

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Looking for tips on raising snow bunnies.

A little bit of background, I have bred rabbits for meat, wool, and show for almost 32 years now. I have a great system for raising rabbits in the middle of central Texas, but one thing we rarely encounter is a hard winter or snow. I'm used to keeping my meat rabbits outside in large cages (with frozen bottles to lay against), and keeping show and wool rabbits inside under the A/C. I know spoiled bunnies, but it works the best for me.

I'm looking at a move to New Mexico where temperatures range from over 100 to negative numbers. It will stay under 0 for a significant portion of time too, something I've never really encountered with rabbits before.

I will be building my own cages, so size and room are not a problem. I will also have a designated rabbit barn to house them in, but what other advice or tips and tricks do y'all recommend for dealing with lower temps over longer periods of time? I don't do wool rabbits at this time, but will be housing meat rabbits, and show bunnies.

Thanks in advance for any advice or help.
 

Larsen Poultry Ranch

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Is there any way you could do an enclosed barn? That way the temperature would be a bit more stable, you could do an AC/evaporative cooling system and a heater.

I haven't dealt with frozen temps, but what I've read is the rabbits do better in colder temps than hotter. If you can give them hiding spots/burrows/dens in their cages that are filled with hay they can huddle in they would stay warmer.
 

B&B Happy goats

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I raised rabbits in New England in the cold and it was much easier raising them in the cold there than it is here in Florida with the heat,and humidity...just give them plenty of hay in a hutch with shelter from the wind...and watch if you get down to sub zero temperatures, you may want to get a water system that prevents freezing for them....
 
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BCBunnies

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I will definitely be doing an enclosed barn. It might be solely for the rabbits, or it may be also used for hay storage above and might have some stalls for goats.
Definitely a big advocate for hay for winter bedding. We do want to stay away from a heater because it stays super dry here. Even if the hay is stored elsewhere I'd still be worried about fire.
Will be using tubing and nipples for water during the summer, but I always keep a big crock bowl under as backup. I completely skip the watering system in winter here and add an extra bowl per bunny. We change out water 3 times a day on frozen days.
I'm hoping that being in the barn will help them not freeze so solidly. Doing the first water change in the morning here takes forever. We also offer more snacks in winter that contain water like fresh fruits and veggies. Apple peels are usually a big favorite.

Thanks so much for the tips, will keep checking back on this for more as well.
 

Larsen Poultry Ranch

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You could look into a split AC unit, the one we just put on our shipping container temporary house has heat too, dunno if all of them do. You might have to watch the electricity bill though.
 

Nao57

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I would guess the most hassle is going to be the water freezing.

But that's an easy fix just that it takes time to deal with.
 
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