Winter Warmth, Bunny Style

Something was gnawing the lattice under the deck.

Something was gnawing the lattice under the deck.

We don’t have a lot of closet space in our home, so I keep my off-season clothes packed in totes in the basement. Once the leaves begin falling off the trees and the air gets cooler, I start to think about “rotating” my clothes — packing the summer shorts and tees away in totes and unpacking my winter sweats, sweaters and corduroys. Usually, I’m pretty lazy about preparing for winter and wait until it gets really chilly. Then, when I can’t stand the cold any longer, I have no choice but to seek out something warmer from the basement bins. Our backyard bunny, however, is not as slow as I am regarding cold weather preparations. He seemed to plan for his winter shelter very early this past fall.

In September, while the weather was still quite pleasant, I started to hear gnawing noises outside. Immediately, I blamed mice. We’ve had mice chewing the inside of our walls before, so I assumed we had a repeat visitor. This time the gnawing seemed louder and, eventually, I realized that the chewing sounds were not inside the house, but outside. I spooked around the backyard for a few days, listening and looking. Finally, my eye caught a slight movement and I found the source of the gnawing sounds. A creature was chewing at the latticework underneath our deck. For a split second, I glimpsed an eye and a nose before the animal hid. Was it a skunk? a rat? a woodchuck? a squirrel? It was definitely not a mouse, but we couldn’t tell for sure who was doing the chewing.

bunny under deck

The gnawer was a bunny.

I kept my eye on the spot. The hole grew bigger and bigger each day until there was a fairly large hole all the way across an entire panel of the lattice. Something had just made a “door” to enter beneath our deck. Several days later, my son ran inside to announce that the chewer was now in residence. It was a rabbit, looking very comfortable in his new, under-deck hideaway. He had prepared a perfectly warm spot for winter shelter, before the snow even arrived. We aren’t sure why, but the bunny didn’t stay there all winter. In fact, after a month or so, we didn’t see the bunny inside his hideout anymore.

bunny nest

A cozy, warm nest for a bunny rabbit.

A few weeks ago, we discovered where the bunny had relocated to. He was still in our backyard and he still had a perfectly warm spot for shelter. He was nestled down in a mound of pine needles, facing the sun, underneath a pine tree. This bunny rabbit sure seems to know how to stay warm and cozy in the winter.

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14 responses to “Winter Warmth, Bunny Style

  1. absolutely adorable! if not a bit destructive! 🙂

  2. What a great post! I loved seeing the outcome, and the winter blanket. 🙂

  3. realy love your blog quite a bit jealous of you though because you are so smart ♥ ♫☼ keep warm

  4. I bet you find baby rabbits under those pine needles and in little holes in the ground in a month or two!

  5. That’s a surprising set of gnashers for a herbivore to be able to gnaw through the lattice wood!

  6. And I thought only cats had a sixth sense for warm and comfy places.

    My neighbor very disgustedly announced that a very huge rat was living under my deck. I later discovered the culprit was actually an opossum. I can’t use the space under the deck – so more power to wildlife!

  7. I did not know that sweet furry little bunnies could/would do this.

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