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Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

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Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

Post Number:#1  Unread postby Lowstorm » Sun Mar 12, 2017 6:49 pm


Let me start all of this with... I am keeping my buns in a colony setting. It is proving to be going great. The does are breeding the buck at the same time, they are both tending to the litters together (which is both good and bad, see below) and they all kind of pile together. No fighting at all. They're moving, when it gets warmer, to a shed. Right now they're in a oversized hutch. The shed will give them a space of 10x10 ft with shelves and more nest boxes, more area to move. Currently they're in an 8x4 hutch without dividers, 4 built on nest boxes (wood/wire cage) I'm in northern MN so the shelter/nest boxes are built right on to keep them from freezing. It got to -40 F in December, January, and its pretty darn cold even now, with babies.

So as of right now I have:
Flemish Giant doe (REW)
Champagne D'Argent doe
Champagne D'Argent Buck

5 champagne kits
7 Flemish/champagne kits, 5 undersized due to the flemish being an idiot and failing at motherhood, 2 were fostered to champ momma, then the other 5 after flemish failed at the whole mommy thing.

So I'm mainly going for meat for the family, and some side-selling for pets/other meat breeders in the area. And I like colors. So I'm playing with the idea of getting another doe. Broken new zealand.
I do plan on keeping one of the flemish/champagne crosses, maybe 2. But I don't know if the undersized kits will catch up to size.

So what do ya'll think? Lots of questions here:

1) Adding colors to the herd via broken nz, I'd prefer a doe. I only want one buck, and the buck I have is a nice size, producing good babies. AND is getting along wonderfully in the colony. I realize if I want more colors over all the babies I'd have to add a buck. But to get a young buck and introduce him to the colony, I'd have to find a slightly older buck (6 months oldish) and remove my buck. AND find one with the perfect temperment. There are broken does available now, but they're young so wouldn't breed for a few more months which is just fine. Long term plans would be keeping one of the champ/nz bucks and breed to the other does.

2) planning on selling/culling the flemish. She's an idiot when it comes to babies. I was planning on letting her try one more litter and if she still failed, pet home. I may or may not keep her for that. Decisions, decisions.

3) Keeping 2 of the flemish/champ cross does to breed back to the champ, giving me a good 75% champ 25% flemish for the size and the meat. But the question with that is, will the undersized ones do okay in a breeding program? They're quite a bit smaller than the others, due to stupid flemish momma not feeding them.

~~~
So at the end of the day I'm thinking of having:
1 champagne d'argent doe (She's a GREAT mother, she's staying!)
1 champagne d'argent buck (great with others-may replace in a year or two with a champ/nz cross)
1 broken nz doe (add color)
1-2 champ/flemish cross does (add size for meat mutt program)


2 years out I'd be looking at:
1 champ/nz buck
1-2 champ/flemish does (75% champ)
1-2 champ/nz does

That would produce.. well, some very interesting babies, color, and a good size. The babies would be mostly champ, and lots of colors.
~~~

Set up 2 would be :
1 champagne d'argent doe (She's a GREAT mother, she's staying!)
Possibly 1 champ baby from doe above
1 broken nz buck
1-2 champ/flemish cross does (add size for meat mutt program)

That would produce a bunch of half nz, half champs and half nz, 1/4 champ/flemish... Still nice sizes, but I'd have to find the perfect temperment for the broken nz buck.

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Re: Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

Post Number:#2  Unread postby SarniaTricia » Mon Mar 13, 2017 9:54 am


I don't colony.... but:

I would suggest giving the Flemish a second chance at being a mama.... (sometimes it takes them at least one lost litter to get the hang of it)

Getting 3 unrelated rabbits to cohabitate is awsome...... you might be pushing your luck bringing in another adult...
a young doe might fair better ... maybe a foster at the 4 -6 week old mark??
Maybe trade 2 kits with a friend? ... rabbits foster very easily...
Or just keep a couple of does from the current litters...

__________ Mon Mar 13, 2017 9:54 am __________

If you are looking for colour.... pull a doe and breed her to another buck (caged elsewhere.. or borrow a buck)
Brokens and REW tend to throw the most diverse colours/patterns (IMO)

My Meat Herd consists of
DOES:
Little Red Riding Hood; Am Chin X red NZ -sr doe: Beautiful animal.. loves human attention... her brothers finished out beautifully!
Scarlett; Am Chin/red NZ x red NZ mix -jr doe: daughter to Little Red Riding Hood, Her dad came from a meat line a friend was working on
Platinum; Am Chin x NZ mix - jr doe: Daughter to a doe I got from the same friend.... hopfully with kindle before the end of the month...
Cinderella; Broken Am Chin mix - sr doe: Mother to Tri Harder
Sheri; Magpie Harlequin marked AM Chin- sr doe: daughter of Cinderella X Prince Charming... great mom, great foster mom... evil witch when cornered or bothered during birthing.... (she is on her last litter with me... maybe.. )

BUCKS:
Prince Charming is a big 13lb, AM Chin mix. He throws Harlequin marked kits regularly. He produces fast growing, well meated, solid kits. He is very people friendly. (I still have him and he may end up growing to a ripe old age)

TriHarder is a REX x Broken AM Chin mix. His fur is not rex, but it is denser and softer than regular NZ fur. He throws a wide range of coloured kits with whoever he is bread with.

So far, I am very happy with this group of meat rabbits... Little Red Riding Hood's kits have finished off a good size at 12-14 weeks (although I have had to butcher at 16 weeks due to commitment timing).. I don't breed intensively, so I usually only have 2-4 litters at a time growing out.
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Re: Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

Post Number:#3  Unread postby Lowstorm » Mon Mar 13, 2017 6:45 pm


Yeah, I've been thinking of that too but am worried about disease. I know my buns look healthy but I'm sure someone else would think the same thing if I bring over super awesome doe to breed. But I'll send out feelers in the community up here.

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Re: Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

Post Number:#4  Unread postby SarniaTricia » Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:10 am


You can check out the ARBA shows in your area.....
You would likely need to go to a few....talk to people and make the connections, before bringing the girls... but studding is often done at shows for a fee.....
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Re: Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

Post Number:#5  Unread postby ladysown » Tue Mar 14, 2017 2:38 pm


Studding is NOT supposed to be done at shows for a fee or not. :) So it's risk.

if you do a switch I would suggest you do it when you move them to their new digs. Get rid of the doe you aren't keeping. Think hard about that miss firing doe.

You could buy a young doe bred... it's a risk that it wouldn't take but also a risk that it will... Or look into fostering kits... it's a risk if you get a doe or a buck.. but sometimes it's a risk worth taking...and if you get a buck you can pull the old buck (caging him in the colony so he's not a stranger) and letting the young buck do it's thing for a couple of months then removing him and letting your old buck do his thing (or switching them around). Not a bad thing to do that anyways..to have a spare. and if they can be safely contained within the colony it's a win win.

different approaches to taking things..the disease factor exists if you bring a new rabbit in as well... but planning it out well will help... especially if you plan it for when you do the move to the new colony.
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Re: Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

Post Number:#6  Unread postby Zass » Tue Mar 14, 2017 4:48 pm


Rabbits foster nestlings very well right up until the point where the kits open their eyes. After that, there is some risk they will not recognize another dam as a milk source. By 4-6 weeks old rabbits are taking enough solid food to be OK without milk. One could still introduce a kit at that age I suppose. Most calmer tempered adult rabbits will be OK with a kit in their space or mixed with their litter. It is illegal to buy or sell under 8 weeks in some states or counties though, and introducing that young would skip quarantine.

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Re: Herd Talk- meat mutts and colors

Post Number:#7  Unread postby Lowstorm » Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:05 pm


I think I'm going to wait on it and see what the heck the colors mine threw now are. Seems everyone wants a premium up here for broken nz's. The weather may be warm enough for me to start the flooring tomorrow! Very excited to get the buns into a new home. I mean, the cross babies are growing great, they're the biggest ones now. No slow growth like was predicted. I may just have to be prepared to move her kits with other mommas. I mean, I don't NEED color. And my boyfriend pointed out if I get colored ones I may get more attached than just brown and black lol

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