Mortality Rate

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by Rancher, Apr 9, 2005.

  1. Rancher

    Rancher Well-Known Member

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    Louisiana
    I am instrested in knowing from the commerical growers what is their mortality rate from birth to sell. In other words, from the time the babies are born till the time they sell the fryers. I asked one of the larger rabbit growers around here and he doesnt keep records on the precentage he loses. I did my figures from Jan. till April 9th and I come up with about 30%. This sounds alittle high to me but he claims that its not too far from norm. Im working on figuring on how to save more babies but if this is about right I wont be beating my head on a brick wall. So if anyone knows their %, how about letting me know. Thanks
    Rancher :bash:
     
  2. citygonecountry

    citygonecountry Active Member

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    Jul 30, 2004
    Location:
    Michigan
    I actually think it depends on MANY things. For one location, time of year bred, breed, and the care they are given. I have not been breeding very long in our first litter we lost 2. In the next set of litters we lost ALL of the litters except 1 litter that had two survive out of 3. Temps dropped suddenly and we weren't prepared. This last litter we lost 2 but she kindled 11. I have one that was due on the 7th and has not kindled, we think she didn't take this is then second mating with her and neither time has she took.

    This time I am taking the buck we used to breed her and a PROVEn doe to see if it is the buck, or if the doe has some problems.

    Sarah
     

  3. Pat Lamar

    Pat Lamar Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Mortality rates are known to go as high as 50%, so I wouldn't panic just yet. However, you may need to make this a priority for your management program. By staying on top of it, you may be able to knock it down as low as 10%. Naturally, the fewer rabbits you have, the easier it will be. By staying on top of it, I was able to knock not only my own mortality rates, but also included any ailments at any one time, down to 10% with a herd of 700 (yes, I kept records on this).

    Consider each case separately and do some detective work. How old were they when they died? What were the symptoms, if any? Do you perform necropsies in the event of unknown causes? If stillborne, how large was the litter? Was the doe proven or not? If proven, what number litter was it? Were they born on the wire?
    Keep a list of what you find out, as this will tell you where you need to improve.

    Pat Lamar
    President
    Professional Rabbit Meat Association
    http://www.prma.org/
    Chairperson, 2005 ARBA Commercial Department Committee
     
  4. Rancher

    Rancher Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Louisiana
    Thanks Pat,
    I do keep records on this and I do have this as a priority. Can you please tell me what is necropsies and how is it preformed? Is there a book on it?
    Rancher


     
  5. Pat Lamar

    Pat Lamar Well-Known Member Supporter

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    A necropsy is a visual autopsy and can be performed by anyone, whereas an actual autopsy requires more intricate work with tests. Anyone who butchers rabbits basically knows what a "normal" rabbit should look like on the inside, and anything which differs from this norm is a sign of problems.

    I do have a 1-1/2 page article on doing your own necropsy as written by Pamela Alley, a vet technician, with permission to reprint. Perhaps I'll post it under a different heading, then.

    Pat Lamar