Harlequin Rabbits

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by RitchieRabbits, Jul 31, 2003.

  1. RitchieRabbits

    RitchieRabbits New Member

    May 28, 2003

    Just wondering, do any of ya'll have Harlequin rabbits?
    Im gonna play around with a trio of those... which I am getting tommorrow! Lilac Jr. Japanese Buck (Beautiful, and nice split face!!), Blue Jr. Japanese Doe, and Chocolate Sr. proven Japanese doe which is the mom of the blue and lilac... all are pedigreed, from Judy Bustle's lines here in NC.
    Im willing for any info on this breed!! Don't know much about them rightnow :?: , unlike my HL and ND breeds I own!! So Im wanting to learn more about the Harlie breed too! How are their personalities, on average? Calm, high-strung, loving, aggressive???? Also, what is a average size litter? Would the culls make a good meat rabbit, are harlies good meat bunz? if so, what age would you butcher? I always hear of raising them to butcher at a young age... well the bigger the more meat, right?? Those are some of my main questions, but Id like to learn anything about the breed!! Thanks!

    -Sara Ritchie
    ~Ritchie Rabbits~
    Quality Holland Lops & Netherland Dwarfs in NC.
  2. Pat Lamar

    Pat Lamar Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jun 18, 2002

    I can't tell you much about them, since I've never raised them, myself. However, just as you had asked in the chat, this evening, Harlies have the "commercial" meat body type. Unfortunately, being a colored rabbit, they are used mostly for show purposes, where they are judged more on their *markings* than on their meat qualities. As such, breeders have concentrated on improving the markings and with little regard for the meat qualities. However, for personal home use, the culls will be just fine for putting meat on the table.

    For meat purposes, rabbits are divided into categories, just like with chicken. "Fryers" would be rabbits not over 12 weeks of age and weighing an average of 4.5 - 5 lbs. Over 12 weeks but under 6 months would be a "roaster," while 6 months and over would be a "stewer." The older the rabbit, the tougher the meat.

    I hope this answers most of your questions.

    Pat Lamar
    Professional Rabbit Meat Association

  3. bittybleat

    bittybleat Member

    Feb 14, 2003
    I have a Japanese Harlequin doe - unpapered - the only question I can really answer is in regards to temperament :p My doe is affectionate though not completely calm. She comes when called and is easy to manage.