Unexpected Garden Guests

Today the weather was beautiful, and we decided to take our learning outside.

As in, I needed to take advantage of the weather and get some gardening done, and I needed some slave labor to help.

The girls pulled weeds and collected rocks while I got out the hoe and pulled up all the grass and weed cover from the garden beds.  I was working along at a pretty good clip, dragging the top layer of weeds and their roots out of the ground, keeping a steady pace so i wouldn’t think about how tired I was getting.

At one point in the back corner of the front garden I noticed a small amount of fuzz fly up at me, but figured it was either partially composted wool bits or some of the fuzzier chicken feathers.

Then I struck down again, and a HUGE clump of the ground came out with the hoe, flinging lots more fuzz, and prompting a loud squeaking, crying noise from the clump.

In that same instant, I saw what I thought was a mouse laying there, squirming about, and I yelped. No, I am not afraid of mice, but I was taken by surprise and had already been edge worried about those huge monster-sized furry spiders that live in the ground out there.

The girls came running, and by that time I realized that the little creature had longer ears than a mouse, and no tail.

All of that fuzz was rabbit fur, and that clump was a nest of babies; a FLUFFLE of bunnies, if you will.

04.08.14a

The clump.  The outside is composed of leaves, hay, and leaves.  The inner part is all rabbit fur.

04.08.14b

There were quite a lot of them crammed in there, and they all sought the heat of each other’s bodies as we cooed over them.

Emily informed us that rabbits do indeed build nests in the ground this way, and that if you find one you are supposed to gently put it back and leave it be.  The mother will be back at some point for them.

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So that is what we did, despite protests from the younger girls that we should keep them forever.

Either way, I am not thrilled about having rabbits in the garden, but leaving them seemed to be the only option I could live with.  I’ll worry about keeping the vegetables safe later.