Gardening is full of surprises. Many years ago while spring cleaning, I moved some debris within the chives and suddenly my eyes were focusing on some little pink things. My first thought was rats, but then I realized that I was looking at newborn cottontail rabbits.
Carefully, I covered them back up, trying to leave the hidden nest as I had found it. Every day when I was out in the garden I would gently uncover it to see how they were doing, and watched as they grew their hair and began to look more like rabbits.
I couldn’t believe the audacity of mama cottontail who made her nest right smack dab in the middle of my fenced garden! It reminded me of Beatrix Potter’s stories of Peter Rabbit and Mr. McGregor’s garden.
I never saw the mama rabbit. From reading on the internet, I learned that they visit their young for only a few minutes during dawn and dusk to quickly feed them. Baby rabbits are often thought to have been abandoned because the mother is nowhere in sight, but that usually is not the case. You can watch a YouTube video of a mama cottontail feeding her young here.
One day, as suddenly as I had found them, they were gone. Now every spring when I’m preparing for a new season, I’m reminded of that fun little surprise. Nature is so entertaining!
What a fun surprise that must have been! How neat that mama rabbit didn’t move her babies and you were able to watch them grow up. 🙂
Yes, it was a neat experience. I’m glad I had a few pictures so I could share it.
Isn’t nature beautifully amazing!
It sure is! I enjoy gardening for so many different reasons.
I had to share your story and photos with Parker!
I’m glad you did!
I remember being 5 or 6 years old and my older brother came across baby bunnies in the ground while he was mowing the lawn! (No bunnies were hurt) It’s one of my fondest memories. I remember watching for (and sometimes actually seeing!) the mama bunny returning as the sun was setting. They are so adorable.
That’s a neat memory! I’m glad they weren’t injured and y’all had fun watching them.
I found some bunnies when hoeing in a flower bed. Felt bad about disturbing their nest, but it was burried partly in the ground and partly in a tunnel through a tangle between lavender branches and iris blades. It was invisible! They were very still and being good bunnies and I put their nest back as best I could…
I’m glad they were safe and sound. Mama bunnies don’t seem to pick very safe places sometimes.
Aw, so cute!