Found a Bunny Nest?
LEAVE IT ALONE!
Rabbits hide their nests in plain view, often putting them in the open; for example, in the middle of the lawn, as well as in brush piles and long grass. If you find a nest that has been disturbed, do all you can to restore and protect it rather than bringing the infants inside. If a dog has discovered the nest, keep your dog away from the area and reconstruct the nest with grasses. If need be, you can move the nest a few feet away where safer.
Rabbit mothers nurse their babies for approximately 5 minutes a day. They will be in the nest or nest box early in the morning and then again in the evening.
The milk is very rich and the babies “fill up” to capacity within minutes. Mother rabbits do not “sit” on the babies to keep them warm as do some mammals and birds. They build a nest with fur and grasses which helps to keep the babies warm in between feedings. Do not force a mother rabbit to sit in the nest box. You can pick up the babies and see if they are feeding by checking the size of their stomachs (should not be sunken in), the pinkness of their skin and activity level (they should not be blue in color or sluggish in movement) and the amount of time that you hear them crying (baby bunnies should be quiet most of the day….if they are crying constantly then they are not getting fed). If you come across a nest of bunnies in the wild and the mother is no where to be seen, please DO NOT disturb them…this is normal. By removing them from the nest you are greatly reducing their chances of survival.
If your dog disturbs a nest or you find a wild bunny with its eyes open, please put him back if not injured. Mom will be coming back at night to call and feed him only once in the middle of the night. Do not take the bunny inside or feed him. That is the mom’s job.
It is a matter of his/her survival and up to us asa humans to leave nature be and let the mom care for her young.
We often hear of mothers moving their babies and their nests, and have seen moms come back every night for up to a week to look for her missing baby.
Do not take the baby from the mom or she will be frantic.
If you haven’t mowed in a long time and your grass is high, please check for a nests in the grass prior to mowing.