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Anybody breeding meat rabbit?

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HighlandLofts:
Any one breeding meat rabbits? I picked up a couple of New Zealand does a few months ago and have two litters about three weeks old. It's time to re-breed them. The first time around was with a male Rex Rabbit we got last year as a pet for the grand kids.

This time around I want to breed one with a Flemmish Giant and the other one with a New Zealand. I plan on keeping two does out of the next breeding for breeding stock.
The ones we have now will be ready to butcher the end of September to the beginning of October.

Years ago I use to buy butcher rabbits and cook them in the oven with Shake & Bake for chicken.
This time around I want to try new things, marinaded in Italian Dressing cooked out on a charcoal grill. I do this with chicken a lot, I also do this with boneless pork chops.
I use boneless chicken breast and cube it up, after I marinade it a couple of days in Wishbone Zesty Italian Dressing put it on wood skews and cook it out side on the charcoal I'll put it on Italian Bread and have at it.

I'll try some simmered in spaghetti sauce.

I want to use a chicken & dumpling recipe but use rabbit instead.

Once I get the other two does up to six months old I'll buy a breeding buck to use instead on the Rex Rabbit.

It will be a fun little project, I'll sell a few of the off spring to help cover the cost of the feed. This breeding had thirteen babies, one litter of seven, one of six.

I built a four stall rabbit hutch, two pens on the bottom, two on top. This time around i can take the devider out of the top so the little ones will have more room until it's D-Day.
Once I get four does going I'll build a movable pen that will house the young rabbits until they are butcher age. Something like a chicken tractor, but off the ground with a all wire floor. Real light weight so it will be easy to move around.

Looking for favorite way to cook rabbits if any one wants to chime in.

h20hunter:
@Widgeondeke

I had some meat bunnies.  Slow cooked them, pulled the meat, made pot pie. Delicious.

KFhunter:
There's some pretty good threads in here about the subject, here is one I started on a while back


http://hunting-washington.com/smf/index.php/topic,157067.0.html

HighlandLofts:
That was some interesting read, I have been looking at some stuff on the computer for rabbit breeding information. Az Rabbits was very helpful.
I did every thing they advised and so far everything is fine.
I built the breeding boxes they recommeded, did it their way every step of the way and had two nice litters of rabbits.
The litter with six babies are a little bigger then the seven litter babies. 
No dead babies, all look healthy.
The two does I have are gloss black and dull black with flecking. Next breeding will be with different color bucks so I can choose two nice looking breeding does, maybe three if the one with the little babies raises another small size litter.

Here is the AZ. Rabbit site,        http://azrabbits.com/useful-information/breeding.html

Haven't gone beyond this section yet. But will be here shortly.




If I replace that doe I guess it's crock pot time or pressure cooker time.

I replaced the bedding in the nest boxes today and replaced new saw dust & hay.


I'm sure there are things that I was unaware of that will come to light as this goes on. But in the mean time it will be a fun adventure.

I wonder it you could live trap a male cottontail and have it breed with a domestic rabbit?

H20, Thank you for coming down to help me out with the reloading, I got it down now. I bought a new 4th Gen. Glock 17 from Bud's Guns. picked it up yesterday from Sound Loan & Pawn.
I bought a nice Galco Jack-Ass shoulder holster from a fellow WA-Hunting member last winter for this gun and carried it today.
When I get done on here I will be reloading some 9mm ammo tonight.

I did take an old Pacific single stage press and had it drilled & tapped for the Hornady Lock&Load adapter. So now I have two Lock & Load presses. One for rifle and one for pistol.

The throw is different so I can't interchange the two. One complete set up for pistol and one complete set up for rifle.


I did go back to az rabbit site and got on to butchering.

http://azrabbits.com/useful-information/butchering.html

jackelope:
We have rabbits. We don't raise them for meat but we have rabbits. I know a few others on the forum that have them.

The smaller litters will almost always have bigger babies. If you have a big litter and a small litter, split them up. A doe has 9 babies and another has 5. If they're the same age within a few days, take a couple babies out of the litter of 9 and put them in the litter of 5. Most does will foster ok.

I'd not recommend bringing a wild rabbit into your herd. Like...that should be the last thing you should ever do.

Flemish giants are big boned. Poor meat/weight ratio.

You ought to consider line breeding your animals. Get yourself a nice NZ buck and he can breed all your does. Breed for the best quality animals you can and you'll have great meat producers. You can line breed 2-3 generations and be ok. Get yourself a buck. Breed to 2-3 does. Keep a doe out of each litter and breed back to that buck and breed the buck back to the original does. Then line breed a doe from each of those litters again and so on. You'll have more rabbits to eat than you know what to do with.

If you need help finding a buck let me know. I pretty much know someone who keeps just about every breed.

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