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  #1  
Old 01/20/09, 07:42 PM
 
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inbreeding brother to sister?

The other nite I had a dog dig into my rabbit barn, I lost 3 of my angora bucks, 1 angora doe, and my 2 silver fox does. We have since moved the rabbits to anouther shed "temorarily" that has a concrete floor so nothing can get in. My dilema is that My buck and one of the does is littermates. does anyone breed brother to sister? I can not afford anouther angora buck anytime soon of the quality that I have. (but did find 2 silver fox, one blue, does that I will be going to see this weekend).

Anyone have advise on do or dont. I wanted to breed to get a few show babys and fiber pets from.

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  #2  
Old 01/20/09, 08:26 PM
 
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Just did it....will let you know the results. I doubt it will matter much. If I get a kit that looks like this.... I will continue this practice.

Bowbuild

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  #3  
Old 01/20/09, 08:28 PM
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Im not sure if I would or not. You may be risking the doe. If you have other does breed them for now and leave this doe until you get a keeper. Keep one buck from another litter and breed it back to her.

Ive heard some people do it with no problems, but others loose there doe and have deformed kits ect. Not sure if I would want to go threw that.

I know you can breed father to daughter, and son to mother and so on.......

I would if I NEEDED to but wouldnt if I had others to breed.....

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  #4  
Old 01/20/09, 09:31 PM
alias mullinaxclan
 
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I think it depends what you're breeding for. I bred a brother and sister rex and have beautiful babies, but then again, I pretty much breed for meat.

Glo

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  #5  
Old 01/20/09, 10:11 PM
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There was a rabbit study done in which they bred full siblings for 18 generations before they started to have problems, rabbits can handle quite a bit of inbreeding. My Silver lines are from repeated full sibling crosses, their all hale and hearty and fertile. It really isn't that big of a no-no, I do prefer to just cross half siblings but don't have any problems if I have to cross full. Try it and see how it goes.

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  #6  
Old 01/20/09, 10:59 PM
 
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Cool Line Breeding or In Breeding

I am doing both, son back to mother, and that same buck back to his sister.

The buck in question [ NZ ] grew like a giant in both size and speed. I know if I breed him back to his mom, the offspring will have that gene. The breeding to his sister has a 50% chance of having that gene. I have no concerns about breeding this way, even if I had to do it to keep my rabbitry going, no problem.

I would imagine if that was all you ever did, you could come up with problems but for the moments in which it is necessary, its not a problem in my mind.

DG

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Originally Posted by Honorine View Post
There was a rabbit study done in which they bred full siblings for 18 generations before they started to have problems, rabbits can handle quite a bit of inbreeding. My Silver lines are from repeated full sibling crosses, their all hale and hearty and fertile. It really isn't that big of a no-no, I do prefer to just cross half siblings but don't have any problems if I have to cross full. Try it and see how it goes.
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  #7  
Old 01/21/09, 01:26 AM
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IN BREEDING IS NOT THE DEVIL omg how many times have we gone over this? lol seriously though, the only thing that will happen if you breed brother to sister or any other rabbit for that matter is you will get more rabbits, then just like in ANY and i mean ANY other litter you ONLY keep the BEST and eat the REST, simple as that,

all of my rabbits except two new does i just added not that long ago are decended from one buck and two does, these three rabbits were left to reproduce as they wished in a womans large enclosure for two years worth of generations before i got my start from her, i got three does and a buck from her younger stock, i culled what i didnt want and wound up keeping one of the original does, her son, and two of her daughters, they have been breeding with out any new blood added (untill i got these two new does) for a total includeing the time from the start of the ORIGINAL stock the woman got to now of about 3 years, and the only thing that i have had turn up is what i called the "Weird Rabbit" which just turnd out to be a Random rex mutation,

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  #8  
Old 01/21/09, 06:44 AM
 
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As KSALguy posted, inbreeding in and of itself does NOT cause problems. What it does is limit the number of genes the "genetic lottery" has to choose from. With fewer choices, if there are genetic faults in the line, there is more of a possibility those "defective" genes ... already in the bloodline ... will show up. That is also true of the "good" genes. You have equal chances in an inbreeding for a doubling up of the "good" ... and the "bad".

If the quality you want is present in both brother and sister ... you will likely get some kits that are even better, since you will have the chance of doubling the genes that have produced those qualities. You may also see some kits that are not as good as either, but simply cull those and retain the ones that are what you want, knowing that you've "doubled" on those good qualities and will likely have an animal even more likely to breed true for those traits.

This is actually where linebreeding and inbreeding can be so valuable to a breeder of any species. I've not done it with rabbits, but have done it very successfully with both dogs and horses. I've taken half-siblings in particular, to double up on specific qualities I wanted to intensify/improve from the related parent ... or son/daughter back to the parent I wanted to double up on.

You do need to cull because it can also double up on faults you haven't seen but that are in the line ... and even that can be helpful because you are able to identify those hidden faults.

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  #9  
Old 01/21/09, 09:08 AM
 
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Thank you for everyones advise. I am going to do the breeding and save the best of the best. I dont mind culling but I have a pet home for one if I get a nice one that is not the quality I want. My little sister has been waiting for me to have a litter. Other than that I know ill have to do a lot of eating, hard to find good pet homes for angoras.

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  #10  
Old 01/21/09, 11:07 PM
aka avdpas77
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SFM in KY View Post
As KSALguy posted, inbreeding in and of itself does NOT cause problems. What it does is limit the number of genes the "genetic lottery" has to choose from. With fewer choices, if there are genetic faults in the line, there is more of a possibility those "defective" genes ... already in the bloodline ... will show up. That is also true of the "good" genes. You have equal chances in an inbreeding for a doubling up of the "good" ... and the "bad".

If the quality you want is present in both brother and sister ... you will likely get some kits that are even better, since you will have the chance of doubling the genes that have produced those qualities. You may also see some kits that are not as good as either, but simply cull those and retain the ones that are what you want, knowing that you've "doubled" on those good qualities and will likely have an animal even more likely to breed true for those traits.

This is actually where linebreeding and inbreeding can be so valuable to a breeder of any species. I've not done it with rabbits, but have done it very successfully with both dogs and horses. I've taken half-siblings in particular, to double up on specific qualities I wanted to intensify/improve from the related parent ... or son/daughter back to the parent I wanted to double up on.

You do need to cull because it can also double up on faults you haven't seen but that are in the line ... and even that can be helpful because you are able to identify those hidden faults.
Right... you amplify the good genes of the line as well as the bad....
A lot has to do with diversity of genes you started with in the first place. If you got all your breeders from the same person, likely they have been line breed before. In fact it will bring out the good physical charactersistics of the breed in a higher percentage. It is what almost all show breeders due to maximise the number of kits that are of show quality. That being said, over a period of years, one will start seeing fertility go down, the general healthyness of the line go down etc. This can be seen everywhere in lines of championship animals, from horses to goats to rabbits to show pigeons.

Goats have lived for centuries in some of the harshest climates of the world with no help from mankind. But if you look at goats now, half of them can't deliver a healthy baby without help. They used to be able to eat almost anything and self regulate their own diet. Now, if you make too much gain available they will over eat and become seriously sick, they can die form eating hay with a little mold on it.... Wild goats would either eat that same hay with no trouble, or would know better that to eat it.

The bottom line is that you can probably inbreed and get by with it. It will allow you to produce a better conformed rabbit faster. "everbody's doing it", and sooner or later "everybody" will pay for it...except those people that are raising litter after litter of healthy "mutts" 10 or 12 at a time.
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  #11  
Old 01/21/09, 11:27 PM
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Originally Posted by o&itw View Post
The bottom line is that you can probably inbreed and get by with it. It will allow you to produce a better conformed rabbit faster. "everbody's doing it", and sooner or later "everybody" will pay for it...except those people that are raising litter after litter of healthy "mutts" 10 or 12 at a time.
That brings up an interesting question. If I'm breeding strictly for meat (not selling to a processor) and not for showing, would I be better off with mutts rather than purebred Cals or NZs?
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  #12  
Old 01/22/09, 01:21 AM
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We get the best fryers with a Cal buck and a NZW doe. Both pure bred.
I have 2 NZW does that have a mother that was bred to her brother and my new silver fox buck has a brother/ sister mating in the 3rd generation back. In the case of the silver foxes they bred Grand Champin brothers and sister together.
I am sure they were hoping for more grand champions.

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  #13  
Old 01/22/09, 06:12 AM
 
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Originally Posted by o&itw View Post
The bottom line is that you can probably inbreed and get by with it. It will allow you to produce a better conformed rabbit faster. "everbody's doing it", and sooner or later "everybody" will pay for it...
Unless you are also selecting for good health or "toughness".

Hardiness is no different than anything else you select for ... fast weight gain, wider body, disposition ... if it is something that you are selecting for and you don't compromise by keeping something "iffy" you aren't going to end up with animals that are less hardy than the ones you start with.

There are always going to be animals in any species/ breeding program that are more prone to digestive problems, or are more easily stressed, or are not as disease resistant. If you don't have a way to identify these things and keep one in a breeding program, the next generation will obviously have a higher percentage of these faults.

I think some of the problem with these things is that they are not as easily identified as type/ conformation/ fur or whatever else a breeder is selecting for ... and the breeder is reluctant to cull when it crops up as a "maybe" ... and everything else is what they are trying to produce.

That is the disadvantage to an intensive linebreeding/ inbreeding program ... you get what is there in more concentrated dosages ... so if you keep animals that have lower disease resistant or more sensitive digestive systems ... you will get more of them in the next generation.
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  #14  
Old 01/22/09, 06:59 AM
 
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Originally Posted by trinityoaks View Post
That brings up an interesting question. If I'm breeding strictly for meat (not selling to a processor) and not for showing, would I be better off with mutts rather than purebred Cals or NZs?
This kind of crossbreeding has been established for years (40 years or more that I know of personally) in the beef cattle industry. They call it 'hybred vigor' and it comes when crossing two unrelated breeds of similar type ... no common bloodlines at all. What you get seems to be ... for whatever reason ... the best of both, with increased "vigor" ... better health, faster growth.

When I was in my teens, it was just starting and we had big Hereford cows that we crossed to Angus bulls. And there was no doubt at all about how effective it was ... we lost fewer of the crossbreds in calving or to disease and they were almost always at the top end of the heavy weights at weaning time. Buyers liked them because it continued on as well into the feedlot.

I don't know why this happens, exactly, but it des not carry on into successive generations ... you get it only in the first, F1, cross. We saw "maybe" some improved fertility, feed conversion, etc. in the F1 cows we kept as replacements, but the next generation, bred back to either Hereford or Angus, or out to a third breed, didn't show this extreme vitality.

Most ranchers ended up continuing with the F1 crosses using two different beef breeds.

I would expect that you will see the same thing with your crossbreds. If you are breeding solely for meat production I would think you would probably do best if you followed the same pattern as many of the beef cattle producers ... keep does of one breed and outcross to bucks of another. You should see the same improvements that the cattle people do with the F1 cross hybreds ...
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Old 01/22/09, 07:16 AM
aka avdpas77
 
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Originally Posted by trinityoaks View Post
That brings up an interesting question. If I'm breeding strictly for meat (not selling to a processor) and not for showing, would I be better off with mutts rather than purebred Cals or NZs?
There is nothing wrong with purebred Californians or NZs. You they have been bred for health and vigor ( if you get stock from somone who is primarily a meat breeder) There are also "show lines" that are probably as inbred as any other show breed. Meat bred animals have a higer weight gain per pound of food, the are usually healthy and prolific, because they have been breed for that not "looks". If you go to a place where they are breeding hundreds for meat, you will see animals that are not at all as "pretty" as the ones you will see at the shows. That doesn't mean that one cant breed meat from show animals. Since people breeding show animals often have a number of "culls" they also have plenty of meet.

"Hybrid vigor" is usually a one-cross thing such as can be seen in Cornish/White Rock chicken crosses. It is on one end of the spectrum, as overly inbred animals are on the other. If you wish to breed for meat...and don't care about shows, then you can use any "meat" sized rabbit, and just choose your animals for being good mothers, fertile, healthy, placid, etc.
if you wish to keep the breed pure.. just get a rabbit from another breeder in a different direction every couple of years with superior atributes, and breed it in to your rabbits.... stay away from brother/ sister matings if you can.(remember that a litter from a pair three years down the road are still brother/sister to the kits the same pair had earlier)
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Old 01/22/09, 10:36 AM
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Check out the threads on Brazilian rabbits; they are all descended from a small group of rabbits brought to the country in the late '70s.

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Old 01/22/09, 12:36 PM
aka avdpas77
 
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Originally Posted by MariaAZ View Post
Check out the threads on Brazilian rabbits; they are all descended from a small group of rabbits brought to the country in the late '70s.

Three possibly unrelated rabitts have lots of genes. They were never breed for a certain shaped head, or a precise body length, certain set to their ears, specific color, etc, etc. The person breeding them was careful NOT to breed them that way, so certain sets of genes did not become more and more common to the detriment of the breed. If they had been breed for a certain exact set of physical appearances, they would not have retained the characterstis of health, fecundity, and viability they still have.

Genetics are not simple. These thing can not be easily explained in a paragraph or two. The way one breeds depend on what one wants. If you want to win show's, get the "best rabbits" you can and line breed (line breeding is a significant study in itself) As soon as a breeder gets a terrific animal, and line breeds from it, producing an abundance of show wiinning annimals, then everyone showing want some of those blood lines. They tend to breed out of his stock because it is more successful (in the shows) After a while most of the show animals in the country get a some combination of the genes in that line. The rabbits they already have they eventually cull, which tends to start removing some of the more viable genes in the general show population. Later, another breeder, using rabbits from the first breeders line, will develope an even more superior (show) rabbit, and the nations breeders will flock to him to get those "good" genes. after a period of years, many of the genes responsible for health and vitality gets diminished. Meanwhile, the everyday breeder who is not going to pay $100 to $500 dollars for a "superior' show rabbit, and who trades rabbits with other breeders of similiar circumstances will be OK.

We are discussing rabbits in general. There are at least three different groups of rabbits involved. Some bred to consistently win shows, Some bred by many people for pets and general use, and those bred specifically for meat where health, and fecundity, and weight gained for ounce of feed input is important. We might throw in a forth. Some of us are breeding primarily for meat, but also purposefully breeding back towards animals that can thrive on a wide variety of food and housing situations, with a natural health and vigor, similiar to wild rabbits.

Some here are breeding to sell both for food and pets, and perhaps to use as a 4-H, or to show for fun. They need an "in between" rabbit, one not bred especially for meat, but not one of the high priced less viable show rabbit lines either. (we are not talking any specific breeds here, rather lines within the breeds)

If one gets a rabbit bred especially for meat production, as some lines of Cals, and NZs are, it will be laughed at in the show room. These lines were developed to squeeze every ounce of meat out of every ounce of food, a must for somone with 50 does, trying to make a living selling to a processing company. One will find "show" lines of these same breeds that are not even close to having the same production and vitality characteristics.
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Old 01/23/09, 01:18 AM
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Originally Posted by o&itw View Post
If they had been breed for a certain exact set of physical appearances, they would not have retained the characterstis of health, fecundity, and viability they still have.
I agree, with the caveat that it would depend on what the certain traits are. I don't think the criteria of which genes are chosen to be perpetuated to the next generation are as important as the culling of those genes that compromise the rabbit's survivability, such as malocclusion. I believe that the Brazilian breed is evidence that a viable population of rabbits can be developed by careful culling of undesirable characteristics. When I purchased the 'Zils I had from the breeder/developer, we had an absolutely fascinating conversation about the genetic diversity of rabbits even in a closed system such as the Brazilians. I didn't ask specifically if she bred for certain physical characteristics, but unless a physical trait has a certain element of "non-viability" (such as the dominant hairless gene in Chinese Crested dogs, which is lethal when an animal inherits one gene from each parent) or a trait that is known to degrade with successive inbreedings (size, as I understand it, has a tendency to drop as the diversity decreases) I can't imagine that selecting FOR a certain trait while culling negative traits would decrease viability, fecundity or health. I am only a hobbyist when it comes to genetics but I absolutely LOVE studying it, so I am totally open to being shown this thinking is wrong.

Actually, in my opinion a better determination of degree of inbreeding is the inbreeding coefficient (I've sometimes seen it called relationship coefficient.) I had a rabbit pedigree program that would analyze each rabbit to see how many common ancestors are in the pedigree, and express this in a percentage. The lower the percentage, the less inbred the animal is. It is conceivable if one follows a tight linebreeding plan, that one can get rabbits with higher coefficients when breeding, say, cousins (that are closely related) then by breeding brother-to-sister from a litter where the parents weren't related. If one googles "inbreeding coefficient rabbits pedigree program" there are several links. I wish I could remember the program I had.

That being said, I feel that inbreeding has its uses, but for the most part I prefer linebreeding and judicious outcrossing in order to bring in genetics I think will enhance what I already have.
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Old 01/23/09, 06:43 AM
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Originally Posted by MariaAZ View Post
I agree, with the caveat that it would depend on what the certain traits are. I don't think the criteria of which genes are chosen to be perpetuated to the next generation are as important as the culling of those genes that compromise the rabbit's survivability, such as malocclusion. I believe that the Brazilian breed is evidence that a viable population of rabbits can be developed by careful culling of undesirable characteristics. When I purchased the 'Zils I had from the breeder/developer, we had an absolutely fascinating conversation about the genetic diversity of rabbits even in a closed system such as the Brazilians. I didn't ask specifically if she bred for certain physical characteristics, but unless a physical trait has a certain element of "non-viability" (such as the dominant hairless gene in Chinese Crested dogs, which is lethal when an animal inherits one gene from each parent) or a trait that is known to degrade with successive inbreedings (size, as I understand it, has a tendency to drop as the diversity decreases) I can't imagine that selecting FOR a certain trait while culling negative traits would decrease viability, fecundity or health. I am only a hobbyist when it comes to genetics but I absolutely LOVE studying it, so I am totally open to being shown this thinking is wrong.

Actually, in my opinion a better determination of degree of inbreeding is the inbreeding coefficient (I've sometimes seen it called relationship coefficient.) I had a rabbit pedigree program that would analyze each rabbit to see how many common ancestors are in the pedigree, and express this in a percentage. The lower the percentage, the less inbred the animal is. It is conceivable if one follows a tight linebreeding plan, that one can get rabbits with higher coefficients when breeding, say, cousins (that are closely related) then by breeding brother-to-sister from a litter where the parents weren't related. If one googles "inbreeding coefficient rabbits pedigree program" there are several links. I wish I could remember the program I had.

That being said, I feel that inbreeding has its uses, but for the most part I prefer linebreeding and judicious outcrossing in order to bring in genetics I think will enhance what I already have.

I agree. We are trying to answer here a complex question, and the answer will vary widley according to what the breeder hopes to do. We also each have a somewhat differnt understanding of what certain words mean which we are using. To some of us "inbreeding" means the continuous breeding of animals together closer than "first cousins", therefore "line" breeding would be included. Due to historical results of excessive inbreeding , "inbred" has taken on the negative conotation of some species that was bred so close as to suffer obvious detriment. If one is going to be successful raising show rabbits, judicious line breeding is almost a necessity. I think the original question here was about raising rabbits for meat.

There is a problem also, because of geneotype versus phenotype. If one is wanting to raise "blue" rabbits for instance, and therefore selecting for blue, it is a choice whose results are immediately obvious. (true of most "conformation" type traits). However one can not see things like "resistance to coccidiosis". There may be many genes involved. If one is raising their rabbits in a clean spotless environment, several of these genes may have already been bred out of the line before the breeder starts noticing a tendenancy of certain offspring towards the disease. They can cull these and may be fine, but the same (surviving) rabbits, placed in a less sterile environment like an outdoor colony, may have be unequipped to deal with it.
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