My husband ordered 6 cubic yards of mulch for our yard and we went to town for three days. While he was raking off the dead leaves to prepare for the mulch in our front yard, he happened upon a bunny nest with four baby bunnies inside!
He showed me the bunny nest, and one bunny popped out and ran for it. Luckily the bunny was slow, so my husband was able to catch it and stuff it back inside the nest.
The next day, PickyKidPix, caught wind of the bunny nest and asked to be shown it. This time when they peeled off the top which was made of leaves and brush, the bunny took off. It took them twenty-five minutes to catch the baby bunny.
PickyKidPix loved holding the baby bunny which had to be stuffed into the nest once more. This time, the bunny struggled to get the top of the nest off. My husband had to hold the top down for ten minutes until the bunny settled down.
PickyKidPix was worried that the mother bunny wouldn’t come back since she touched the bunny with her bare hands. She searched online about wild baby bunnies and was relieved to learn that this is a myth.
To make sure the mother bunny was returning to care for her babies, she made a criss cross pattern of sticks on the top of the nest. She learned that wild cottontail bunny babies are weaned within three weeks, and are ready to venture off on their own when they are the size of a chipmunk. Her baby bunny was definitely the size of a chipmunk.
Other signs that the babies are ready to leave their nest include being able to hop, and having their ears erect. Our baby bunnies’ ears are not erect yet, so it might be a few more days until they are ready.
My other two kids want to see the baby bunnies but my husband said no dice. It was too hard to catch the runaway bunny. Also, he noticed hawks on our street that look very interested in what is going on. Other natural predators include coyotes, and my husband has also seen one in our side yard very early in the morning.
Our baby bunny nest has made our mulching experience exciting. How about you? Are you mulching? Do you see baby animals where you live?
p.p.s. When Valarie Budayr found baby foxes in her yard in Tennessee, she started a publishing company with her first book, The Fox Diaries: The Year the Foxes Came to Our Garden, that chronicled the progress of the baby foxes.
Our favorite bunny books
Classic Picture Books with Bunnies
Pat the Bunny by Dorothy Kunhardt
My kids loved this interactive book when they were younger. It’s a beloved classic! [picture book, ages 2 and up]
The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter
Peter Rabbit reminds me of our runaway bunny who shouldn’t be running away from the bunny nest. Predators are after both bunnies — mine in my yard, and Peter in Mr. MacGregor’s garden — and I hope my bunnies end up safely home like Peter. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd
The baby bunny is also hard to put to bed. It takes mother bunny an hour; it took my husband twenty-five minutes to get our runaway bunny stuffed back inside the bunny nest. This wonderful classic should be part of every child’s bedtime story collection. [picture book, ages 2 and up]
Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney, illustrated by Anita Jeram
Little Nutbrown Hare loves his parents a whole stretched arm amount, but his parents love him that much too, and more. Win the coloring book based on this enduring classic by entering the Rafflecopter at the bottom. [picture book, ages 2 and up]
The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Clement Hurd
No matter what the runaway bunny says or does, mother bunny will find her bunny and stay near it. That’s what mother bunnies do. Our bunny mom in our yard included! [picture book, ages 2 and up]
Max and Ruby series by Rosemary Wells
PickyKidPix loved this series about a protective older sister and her little brother who always seems to get into scraps. In this picture book, she is trying to bake a cake, but assistance from her brother doesn’t help. [picture book, ages 3 and up]
Tops and Bottoms by Janet Stevens
PickyKidPix had a book club using Tops and Bottoms when she was learning to read. The activity was to plant a container garden that each child took home. Plants included tomato, cucumber, sweet basil, marigold and parsley. Perfect for preschool through 2nd grade book club to do in late spring or early summer. This is a funny Caldecott honor picture book with roots in American slave tales, celebrating the trickster tradition of using one’s wits to overcome hardship. [picture book, ages 4 and up]
Knuffle Bunny series by Mo Willems
This bunny is only a stuffed bunny, but it’s just as stressful as a runaway bunny when the stuffed bunny gets left behind. [picture book, ages 3 and up]
GIVEAWAY: Guess How Much I Love You Coloring Book
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