New mom has killed a baby help

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Laura Glenn

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I purchased a mother rabbit last year and a week later she had babies. Not sure if the father of the babies were the mother's brother or if that makes a difference. But in the last few months 2 of her offspring has had litters. The 1st one deheaded most of her young. We thought maybe a rat also, since we do have a farm. The other one had a litter last week. She has made a big nest for them. 3 of the 6 were separated at birth and didn't make it. This morning she or the rat has deheaded one. What should I do.
 

Aki

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Why do you let those rabbits reproduce? From what I understand, your probably inbred rabbits got inbred litters? Are those rabbits you intend to eat? The mothers probably did it - it's not unusual when the conditions are not good and the rabbits feel stressed out. If you breed for meat, find rabbits who are not related to do this and do it in good conditions, with a place secure enough that you won't wonder if your rabbits are threatened by rats. If you don't intend to eat those rabbits, keep the males separated from your females and spay / neuter all those rabbits. Of course, you also have to secure their place so rats can't get in.
 

Laura Glenn

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I was unaware that she was even pregnant when I first purchased her. And if I was sure that this would be the cause of it, I would have not of breed her litter for babies.
 

Preitler

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Well, normally occassional inbreeding isn't that big a deal with rabbits, it's not like they immediatly produce monsters. The proplems start when negative traits aren't culled.
Imho, it's rather unlikely that those sisters show the exactly same behaviour, it's not impossible, but I would first look for more likely things.

First thing, make the hutches rat proof, set traps and baits closetothe hutches, and if feasable a wildlife camera.
Hm, head missing, do you have weasels, mink, marten etc.? (I really love my wildlife camera...)

Then, are you sure the kits were alive? Eating dead kits is quite normal. I would count that as strike one if you are sure te does did it. First timers botch it sometimes, most do better at the second try.

Anyway, if that happens again after making sure no rats or whatever can get in I would really consider replacing the does with better stock.
 

Laura Glenn

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The other sister has not ate any of her litter. We have set trap after trap for the rats/rodents. I have a total of 4 mothers with new borns and she is the only one with a deheaded kit. Should I bring her inside to feel more secure?
 

LionheadRabbitLover

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She could be killing her babies due to stress. Sometimes mothers will kill or eat their babies if they feel the environment is not safe. Either that or she is just a bad mom.
Decrease stress in the area, and if it still happens again then you know.
 
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