Sue D, Please explain your background with rabbits

Discussion in 'Rabbits' started by Tracy, Mar 9, 2004.

  1. Tracy

    Tracy Well-Known Member

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    Hi Sue,

    Not meaning to sound snotty but I have been reading some of your responses and with all due respect you are giving people wrong information.

    I am copying some of your posts and giving my feedback.

    "Most times, if she's delivering on the wire even with a box in the cage, it is either because there is too little room, or its too warm in the box for her. Normally, even a first timer will manage to get any viable kits into the box before they freeze.

    For a first-time doe, there could be myriad reasons why those kits would not survive in the first place. She could have been saving you a lot of heartaches..."


    I have yet to see a rabbit pick up a kit and put it in a nest box, if kindled on the wire. They are not cats or dogs that carry their young around by the mouth :confused: First time kits do survive quite often given good management practices.


    From another thread:
    "There is never a reason to remove perfectly healthy kits from their mother - no matter the size of the kindling. Including, but not limited to surrogate does."

    It is a proven fact that by reducing a large litter to 8-10 and fostering the remaining to another doe with a litter of say 6 that you will get better growth rates. As this is a commercial board and needing to have as many VIABLE rabbits to send to the processor, you need to at least TRY to do what is best for commercial porposes. That is aways trying to foster. This is the reason that it is always recommended to breed more then 1 or 2 does to kindle at the same time.

    Here is another one:
    "Brothers and sisters" if kept together from birth will not breed, either, nor will they usually fight. (In fact... if you keep males and females together, even if you TRY to breed them, it will take several weeks of being seperate before they will - in a cage situation, anyway.)

    Appararently you have not butchered many rabbits. Brothers and sisters will and DO breed if housed in the same cage for longer then 12 weeks. It is rare for a buck to be sexually mature at 3 months but by 4 months some are. Cant tell you how many times I have butchered a rabbit that was housed with siblings only and the doe has been bred. Bucks will start fighting with their siblings by 12 weeks of age.

    This was from the mini lop thread:
    She isn't nursing them anymore, and is probably tired of having them try. Get them into another or seperate cages. THey are probably also over-crowded, and making her life miserable!

    Most mini breeds do nurse up to 8 weeks. I agree if the cage is to small they should be seperated but standard practice is NOT to wean smaller breeds before 8 weeks of age. Even in some commercial growers herd they have adopted a 42 day breed back schedule and wean at 8 weeks due to the fact that the kits are still nursing somewhat and have better growth rates. What the milk spickets just turn off at a certain time? :rolleyes: No the milk is gradually reduced as kits start eating sollid food and also when the doe is bred back.

    Again, I am not trying to be disrespectful regarding your opinions and I truly believe that the is not one way to raise rabbits and what works for me will not neccesarily work for some one else. but some of this info is just plain wrong.

    Being the moderater here [I started this board a couple years ago as I was not happy with some other boards that claimed to be about meat rabbits and commercial production but really never addressed the commercial rabbit industry]. Every one is welcome to post but the bottom line this is about commercial production. Unfortunatley, I do not have a lot of time to be on the computer so I can only answer threads as my time permits. There are some other very knowledgable people on this board and the info is there. I also would recomend that any one interested in the commercial rabbit industry join the PRMA www.prma.org

    Tracy
     
  2. birdie_poo

    birdie_poo Well-Known Member

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    I wont let my lop buck breed anymore becuase he produces VERY agressive kits. I've been pressed for space trying to get them to stop fighting. On poor bunny has permenant scars, and has been named Nibbled because the others picked on it so bad, he was bitten all over his body and his eye is deformed from them biting it.

    Same litter, two bucks rooming together had to be seperated when the more agressive one pulled almost all the hair out of the other one.

    I'm pretty sure it's the genes, and I don't want to have to go through breeding more of that into my stock, but I know even docile rabbits will fight with each other. That's why you should keep them sepearted.
     

  3. shaneymc

    shaneymc Well-Known Member

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    we definitely see temperament passed down from mom to kits.
    our pure nz blacks are absolute psycho material and their kits are the same no matter who the father is. nice meaty buns, but a hassle to handle and to butcher.

    our mixed breed brown doe is the complete oppisite. relaxed, gentle, consistent breeder. her kits are easy to handle and very laid back.

    after the 12-14 week mark though, our bucks (and even some does.. heh) will start to mount other buns and they start getting territorial too.
     
  4. Denise K.

    Denise K. Well-Known Member

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    Tracy,
    Thank you for bringing this up. I also have questioned some of her suggestions. As an experienced rabbit producer/breeder I cringe with some of the advice I have seen. Do to my job and business though I do not always have time to answer all the posts. Please if you do reply to a post or read a post be sure to think it over your reply. Remember we can all learn from each other. But what works for one may not work for all.
    Denise
     
  5. SueD

    SueD Well-Known Member

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    Aug 1, 2002
    Again, I am not trying to be disrespectful regarding your opinions and I truly believe that the is not one way to raise rabbits and what works for me will not neccesarily work for some one else. but some of this info is just plain wrong.

    Being the moderater here [I started this board a couple years ago as I was not happy with some other boards that claimed to be about meat rabbits and commercial production but really never addressed the commercial rabbit industry]. Every one is welcome to post but the bottom line this is about commercial production. Unfortunatley, I do not have a lot of time to be on the computer so I can only answer threads as my time permits. There are some other very knowledgable people on this board and the info is there. I also would recomend that any one interested in the commercial rabbit industry join the PRMA www.prma.org

    Tracy[/QUOTE]


    Hi Tracy -

    Funny - I’ve been posting on the main board since 2000 or 2001, and here for quite a while… and never been challenged… BUT - quite frankly I am very glad you did!!! No - I don’t take offense at all.

    I started with rabbits when I was 6... I spent more time at the neighbor’s than at home for several months before my Mom would let me get a rabbit - and then I brought home 5 (3 does, 2 bucks). They lived a few blocks away, and though many neighbors were breeding rabbits at the time, the closer ones just didn’t have as many! They raised foster kids, and the kids had the rabbits to help with the food, and to bring in some badly needed income. Between the house and garage they had over 100 breeding pairs, plus I don’t know how many kits of varying ages. The kits were kept together by ’litter’ until there were free cages from sales and what-have-you. Depending, this could be anywhere from 5 weeks (when they were weaned as a rule) to several months. Mainly these were Dutch and Dutch crossed with Californians. They sold pets both privately and to pet stores, and did a little meat business, but froze more than they sold.

    During college, I had to sell out because I went ’away’ to school, but kept a doe as a ’house bunny’.

    I’ve been in and out, mainly for pets and freezer stock during the intervening years, have raised them as a business in both Hot Springs, AR (1985 - 1989) and again in Idaho (2000 - 2001), and am considering again lately. This is mainly for the pet market, so ultra-fast weight gain isn’t important. I’ve always had Dutch/California crosses, which aren’t really great for a meat market anyway. The largest concern I’ve had averaged about 60 animals total at any one time, so it could hardly be considered commercial. However, they were not the only business venture I was involved in, either, and so required just as much efficiency as a commercial rabbitry would.

    Incidentally, the way my niece Amanda raised hers (show animals, mainly 4H and a tiny business concern) was VERY similar in most ways to the way I saw it done and did it growing up.

    I still have rabbits (Actually A rabbit - the 2nd of three finally went this winter of age - she was about 10 I think - no one knows), but am not presently engaged in a business involving them. I should mention, too, that my Grandmother used to keep rabbits as well. I’m back in IL - and I am still very familiar with Bloomington, though not a member of any registry/organization/society.

    Since DH works at a J. O. B., I am responsible for all four businesses, for the paperwork and footwork of his business, the house, garden, pets etc. I don’t have time to do what nature can do for herself, nor do I have the inclination.

    I understand that I am not and never have been tactful. And, for that I must apologize. I know I sound like I think mine is the only way - I’m REALLY NOT that arrogant, just not gifted with the English language well enough and refuse to put disclaimers on every post. To me it’s a given that I’m just stating what my experience is.

    There is no way I can speak to 100% of every situation - nobody can. I can, however tell what I do, have done, and will do. I learn as much here as anyone, but I also have 32 years experience under my belt. What I am is practical, efficient, greedy, selfish and not a little bit lazy. I’ve never sold second-rate stock and never operated at a loss except for during start up stages in any business I’ve run. So that’s the history. Now understanding that I am NOT tactful and I DON’T have all the answers, I will attempt to reply to your replies…I’ll post it separate so this doesn’t get TOOOOO long…

    Sue