antique breeds?

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by SherryR, Sep 3, 2005.

  1. SherryR

    SherryR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    490
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2005
    Hi,
    Did a search but didn't see anything--probably wrongly worded.

    What were some of the antique breeds of rabbits raised by farmers in the past? Ones that are becoming rarer now adays? Anyone have any websites, or ideas where to look?Were they as sturdy as the ones we have today? (thinking of californian, flem. giant., nzw) Why did they go out of popularity?

    Thanks for your input,
    SherryR
     

  2. SherryR

    SherryR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    490
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2005
    thank you Xandra!

    Sherry
     
  3. rabbitgal

    rabbitgal Ex-homesteader

    Messages:
    1,508
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Xandra, thanks for the link. I'd heard that the ALBC was going to be monitoring rabbits, but hadn't heard anything much since then. www.rarebitsandpieces.com has some info on rare breeds. (The guy that did the website is the same guy who imported the first Blanc De Hotot rabbits to our country.) Try searching online for "endangered rabbit breeds" or "rare rabbit breeds".

    Many of the older "heritage" breeds of rabbits are still rather popular today, like Flemish Giants, English Lops, English Angoras, Dutch, Polish, Champagne D'Argents, and Himalayans. Other old breeds that are a bit rarer include the Brittania Petite, the Creme D'Argent, and the English Spot. (The ARBA guide book has a nice little section on breed histories, BTW ;) ) I noticed that the only "antique" breeds listed on the website are the Beveren, Silver, and Belgian Hare. IMHO, maybe we should focus on saving the ancient, irreplacable rare breeds before the newer breeds that had their moment of fame before falling out of favor. The historical significance of a breed also needs to be examined.

    That's my 2 cents. :)
     
  4. SherryR

    SherryR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    490
    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2005
    you've made some interesting points, rabbitgal.


    sherry
     
  5. rabbitgal

    rabbitgal Ex-homesteader

    Messages:
    1,508
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Also try the yahoo group "rarebreedrabbits" go to www.groups.yahoo.com, search for that group. There's other Yahoo groups specifically for certain rare breeds. The group for Creme D'Argents is cremedargentrabbits or something like that.
     
  6. Xandras_Zoo

    Xandras_Zoo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    815
    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2004
    Location:
    Richmond, BC, Canada
    I agree rabbitgal. It would be awful to loose a breed like the Belgian Hare, which started the rabbit fancy in America. When I was at the local fair, the majority of rabbits were Lionheads. Not a Hare to be spoken of- not even a Jersey Wooly!
     
  7. Thatch

    Thatch Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    368
    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2002
    Speaking of hares. Does anyone raise true hares domestically? Only thing I've ever found on it was information on raising them for reintroduction into the British countryside. I got to have hare once while in England and saw the massive things on several occations sitting like a ghost out in a field in the foggy mornings, but I've not heard of them actually being raised as livestock.

    J
     
  8. natybear

    natybear Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    300
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2005
    Location:
    Portland, Oregon
    Well that's because hares take 6 weeks gestation and like to spread their babies out into little areas within a mile of eachother and then feed them once a day by running between the little nests. They can't be bred to rabbits so finding other hares requires a lot more work. Hares are a completey different specie so they are harder to find, even in the wild. I wish some more people would raise the American and the Beveren, they are so rare in ARBA.
     
  9. rabbitgal

    rabbitgal Ex-homesteader

    Messages:
    1,508
    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    It would be a shame for any of our breeds to die out. Unfortunately, people seem to get caught up in fads. Remember, Belgian Hares were extemely popular at one time, then big blue rabbits. Right now, small breeds that come in an array of colors are the rage, but give it a while. Maybe another reason that is that many of those who raise larger breeds also eat them, and the next generation of rabbit breeders are horrified by the thought of eating rabbit. Do you think the ARBA will split someday and meat/commercial breeders and pet people will go their separate ways?

    Seriously, folks, if you don't currently raise a rare breed, please think about it. I love my Creme D'Argents--they're so beautiful and have a lot of character.

    I would really like to see a Belgian Hare sometime. From photos, they look so elegant. (Wouldn't have much meat on them, but they sure are beautiful! :) )