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I finally have a litter with great growth! Update 5-25

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I finally have a litter with great growth! Update 5-25

Post Number:#1  Unread postby alforddm » Tue Jan 09, 2018 7:30 am


I've been raising rabbits for 3 years in Aug. I've struggled with poor growth. I was happy if I got 5lbs by 12 weeks. My first rabbits gave me closer to 3lbs at 12 weeks. My first litter from the fall gave me a buck that was 5lbs 3 oz at a few days over 9 weeks and on top of the they have fairly good type. Nice thick meaty rabbits. Of course there were only 3 in that litter but still. The dams was 5lbs 8oz at 12 weeks out of a litter of 9 and this was the bucks first litter. The two does were both 4lbs 6oz. I'm going to keep back all 3 of them and see how things go. I don't have a picture of them now but here is a baby pic.

They are harlequin, chocolate chin, and broken harlequinized castor.
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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#2  Unread postby Marinea » Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:00 am


Nice growth and such pretty buns.
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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#3  Unread postby Nymphadora » Tue Jan 09, 2018 11:15 am


That chocolate chin sure is pretty! :in_love:

And kudos on the improved growth rates!

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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#4  Unread postby macksmom98 » Tue Jan 09, 2018 3:32 pm


Congrats! We are growing a few pens out for our County fair in 2 weeks, and are enjoying better growth this year, compared to last. It's nice when everything seems to come together:)

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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#5  Unread postby alforddm » Tue Jan 09, 2018 4:37 pm


Ok, I couldn't resist, I had to go take some update pictures. They are 13 weeks so and they've grown quite a bit since I weight them.
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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#6  Unread postby Ozarkansas » Tue Jan 09, 2018 5:15 pm


They are gorgeous bunnies! That's awesome on the growth rates! I'm finally getting better ones this year too!
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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#7  Unread postby KimitsuKouseki » Tue Jan 09, 2018 6:37 pm


I love the pattern of the Broken. Good on you for getting nice bunnies ^^

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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#8  Unread postby MaggieJ » Tue Jan 09, 2018 6:47 pm


:congratulations:

Nice growth rate and great looking buns! It will be interesting to see the growth rate and meatiness of their offspring. I'm guessing it will be sustained.
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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#9  Unread postby Nymphadora » Tue Jan 09, 2018 7:20 pm


Thank you for the updated pictures! :oops:

I love how grumpy some Rex look. So adorable! One of mine is starting to get that same look, and I just can't resist loving him all the more!

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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#10  Unread postby GBov » Sat Jan 20, 2018 6:06 pm


OOOOooooo VERY NICE!!!

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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth!

Post Number:#11  Unread postby alforddm » Fri May 25, 2018 8:32 am


I just thought I'd update this. I weighted her litter of 10 day before yesterday and they weighted about 4 1/2 lbs at 12 weeks. Not super great but not bad either. So litter size makes a HUGE difference. Same doe, same sire, same feed-- litter of 3 vs litter of 10. She actually had 12 but I fostered the two smallest to another doe. Still not bad growth but not as good as I'd hoped.

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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth! Update 5-25

Post Number:#12  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sat May 26, 2018 8:17 am


Litter size does make a big difference. I always preferred a litter of 6-8 to one that was really large. The kits grew better and there were fewer losses.

I never managed, on a natural diet, to get fryers to butchering size by twelve weeks. Most took 14-16 weeks. But in a colony that was less of an issue and feed costs were so much lower that I didn't mind the extra time.

In recent years, a few members have managed better results with natural feeding, but the difference may have been the quality of the rabbits themselves. Mine, except towards the end when I had a purebred NZ Red sire, were just mutts. I did get better results with a better buck.

Are you keeping any of this litter for breeders, alforddm? You might find that breeding them back to the parents brings some interesting results.
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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth! Update 5-25

Post Number:#13  Unread postby alforddm » Sat May 26, 2018 11:00 am


I feed pellets mostly. I like the idea of natural feeding and I like researching plants, but it's alot of work to actually put into practice. :lol: One of these days I may get brave and try a colony, I'm just concerned with cocci and fire ants.

I'm keeping back a chocolate magpie doe from this litter and I have another chocolate magpie and a chocolate chin that are full siblings. I do plan to breed the dam back to her son from her first litter this fall. He was the one that was 5.3lbs at nine weeks (litter of 3) and he is HUGE. I can't weigh him because my scale doesn't go high enough.

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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth! Update 5-25

Post Number:#14  Unread postby MaggieJ » Sat May 26, 2018 2:07 pm


Natural feeding IS a lot of work if you have a sizeable rabbitry. Here we are blessed with good, cheap alfalfa hay, which is a big help. We also have acreage to gather plants from.

Do you have the dreaded kudzu in your part of Oklahoma? If so, it could provide a ready source of quality forage. I know it is a huge problem, but I've often thought it could be put to better use for raising livestock than it has been so far.

I hope you'll post about future results from this line of rabbits. It will be interesting to follow it. Your big buck from the small litter sounds promising. I had one like that and he was the best herd sire I ever had, but unfortunately I had to give up the rabbits fairly soon after that. Pudge (named in his baby days) went to camp with the others, which was a pity. The interesting thing about his carcass was that there was next to no fat on him: it was all good lean meat.
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Re: I finally have a litter with great growth! Update 5-25

Post Number:#15  Unread postby alforddm » Sat May 26, 2018 6:06 pm


He's the sire of the magpies I posted from the magpie doe I almost lost (which is also his dam's dam). They are 4 weeks old now and I'm really looking forward to seeing how they do. I'm pretty sure the broken magpie is a male so I'll possibly use him to replace my tri buck since I'm working toward chins and magpies.

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