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S F Meat Rabbit vs Cal/NZ Meat Rabbit Grow Out - Page 8

post #71 of 205

are you also comparing the weight of each litter as the moma ages? just wondering if the weight of each kit in the litter increases at earlier ages as the mother gets older.

i've never raised rabbits before for meat, nor do i own rabbits. but i am just curious if anyone has kept track of those statistics!

1 corgi, 1 cat, and about 25 chickens! oh, and 1 husband going 'clucky'!
future project: bantam cuckoo faverolles and bantam ermine faverolles! LF silver laced and ermine faverolles too!
join us at the faverolles thread anytime! http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=268082&p=1
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1 corgi, 1 cat, and about 25 chickens! oh, and 1 husband going 'clucky'!
future project: bantam cuckoo faverolles and bantam ermine faverolles! LF silver laced and ermine faverolles too!
join us at the faverolles thread anytime! http://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=268082&p=1
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post #72 of 205

I have 2 californians does and a NZ/Papillion buck.  In general I find that when I grow them all out to week 12, they eat 9/10th of a 20kg bag of 17% protein rabbit pellets, this includes the feed for the adults. 

I wean at 64 days when I remate the doe, and that is the point when I process the bucks because they don't grow as well as the females (and are harder to peel!) and in any case, 8 weeks is the sweet spot in terms of feed efficiency because nothing fattens a bun more than the does' milk.  Also, the cage space does not come free either and the small rabbits are far easier to clean too.  Since I have no recorded the feed for the maternity cage, I will do this for the upcoming litter, should be fun smile

My supplier had only 14% feed once, and so I tried it.  The result was a greatly reduced growth rate of the kits and both does' next litter was fewer and lighter.

Feed conversion is a voodoo measurement, because it does not take into account the fluid in the food.  Hence Tilapi has a 2:1 conversion, because fish flakes are somewhat dry smile  Personally I think the protein/fat/carb intake is a better measure.

But really, unless you go past the rapid growth curve in any meat breed of any animal, what you feed is fairly much what you get -- which in my case is 900gm for an 8 week old buck, and 1.6kg for a 12 week old doe.  If I let a buck grow to 12 weeks, they tend to have 1.4kg carcasses, and I can taste the buck taste, even after removing all the glands. (I weigh without innards)

Trivia fact: the best dress out percentage is achieved by Dutch rabbits @8 weeks, who are rather small.  http://msucares.com/livestock/small_animal/slaughter.html

Dressing Percentage of New Zealand and Dutch Rabbits at Different Ages
Age   New Zealand   Dutch
8 weeks   55.9%   60.3%
13 weeks   59.2%   63.3%
Mature   58.2%   62.8%

post #73 of 205
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppelchen 

Trivia fact: the best dress out percentage is achieved by Dutch rabbits @8 weeks, who are rather small.  http://msucares.com/livestock/small_animal/slaughter.html

Dressing Percentage of New Zealand and Dutch Rabbits at Different Ages
Age   New Zealand   Dutch
8 weeks   55.9%   60.3%
13 weeks   59.2%   63.3%
Mature   58.2%   62.8%



I wish I could get that kind of dress out on my Thriantas, which are roughly the same size as the Dutch.  Kinda like Cornish Game Hens, right?! I have some three month olds that are looking mighty tasty right now...and getting on my nerves! Alas, the Thrianta bone is much larger than the very refined Dutch.

Cheers, Rachel
Haiku Heritage Farm
Still in the frozen white north. As far as I can tell, "Winter is coming" is old news.

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Cheers, Rachel
Haiku Heritage Farm
Still in the frozen white north. As far as I can tell, "Winter is coming" is old news.

Reply
post #74 of 205
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppelchen 

I have 2 californians does and a NZ/Papillion buck.  In general I find that when I grow them all out to week 12, they eat 9/10th of a 20kg bag of 17% protein rabbit pellets, this includes the feed for the adults. 

I wean at 64 days when I remate the doe, and that is the point when I process the bucks because they don't grow as well as the females (and are harder to peel!) and in any case, 8 weeks is the sweet spot in terms of feed efficiency because nothing fattens a bun more than the does' milk.  Also, the cage space does not come free either and the small rabbits are far easier to clean too.  Since I have no recorded the feed for the maternity cage, I will do this for the upcoming litter, should be fun smile

My supplier had only 14% feed once, and so I tried it.  The result was a greatly reduced growth rate of the kits and both does' next litter was fewer and lighter.

Feed conversion is a voodoo measurement, because it does not take into account the fluid in the food.  Hence Tilapi has a 2:1 conversion, because fish flakes are somewhat dry smile  Personally I think the protein/fat/carb intake is a better measure.

But really, unless you go past the rapid growth curve in any meat breed of any animal, what you feed is fairly much what you get -- which in my case is 900gm for an 8 week old buck, and 1.6kg for a 12 week old doe.  If I let a buck grow to 12 weeks, they tend to have 1.4kg carcasses, and I can taste the buck taste, even after removing all the glands. (I weigh without innards)

Trivia fact: the best dress out percentage is achieved by Dutch rabbits @8 weeks, who are rather small.  http://msucares.com/livestock/small_animal/slaughter.html

Dressing Percentage of New Zealand and Dutch Rabbits at Different Ages
Age   New Zealand   Dutch
8 weeks   55.9%   60.3%
13 weeks   59.2%   63.3%
Mature   58.2%   62.8%



I did not see where the article said that Dutch rabbits have the best dress out percentage of ALL rabbits -  Just that they have a higher percentage then NZ.
As for feed I feed a commerical 18% bag feed, that is all that the mill has.  The lower percentage feeds make smaller fryers.
Sharon

 Midget White, Standard Bronze turkeys, Muscovy ducks, India Blue, White & Spaulding peafowl, Buff Orpington, Copper Black Marans Chickens, Corturnix quail and Ringneck Pheasants

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 Midget White, Standard Bronze turkeys, Muscovy ducks, India Blue, White & Spaulding peafowl, Buff Orpington, Copper Black Marans Chickens, Corturnix quail and Ringneck Pheasants

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post #75 of 205

The one doe that is due this week isn't hopping around with bedding in her mouth yet, but she really likes her nest box!


The other one I tried to re-breed. I put her in the bucks cage and she immediately started growling and running away, so after about 5 minutes I took her out. Guess I will try again in a few days.


The bucks are both a year old. I don't know if they have been bred before, I kind of doubt it. I have never seen the first one try to "get on" the doe, but the other one hops on as soon as I put the doe in the cage, just unfortunately, on the wrong end... lol.


I'll figure this out one of these days! smile LoL. And I thought rabbits were supposed to be easy, ha!


Edited by WhiteMountainsRanch - 11/2/10 at 6:20pm
post #76 of 205

Cari, I know a lot of people who prefer 'table breeding'. You can hold the doe and assist, if needed, and help the buck. I believe they need to be trained to be comfortable with this shuffle from an early age, though. If they're afraid of you, they won't be willing to get it on in a strange environment!

Cheers, Rachel
Haiku Heritage Farm
Still in the frozen white north. As far as I can tell, "Winter is coming" is old news.

Reply

Cheers, Rachel
Haiku Heritage Farm
Still in the frozen white north. As far as I can tell, "Winter is coming" is old news.

Reply
post #77 of 205
Quote:
Originally Posted by sandspoultry 

I did not see where the article said that Dutch rabbits have the best dress out percentage of ALL rabbits -  Just that they have a higher percentage then NZ.
As for feed I feed a commerical 18% bag feed, that is all that the mill has.  The lower percentage feeds make smaller fryers.
Sharon


Well, NZ is pretty much in the top 3 as a meat producer(in fact there is not much difference at that level, what you gain at one end is lost at the other), so it kind of implies it, but you're right, I wasn't precise here at all smile

When I researched into getting meat rabbits, I was surprised to see the small Dutch rabbit be such good value that they outperform an NZ.  Also, the percentage is significant:

Animals with good meat characteristics have a higher dressing percentages than thin animals.


Moreover, the rabbits used in the study would be from top notch stock, and so, the Dutch performance is even more surprising since they are mainly bred to be pets and not selected for meat so much.

post #78 of 205
Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiteMountainsRanch 

The one doe that is due this week isn't hopping around with bedding in her mouth yet, but she really likes her nest box!
The other one I tried to re-breed. I put her in the bucks cage and she immediately started growling and running away, so after about 5 minutes I took her out. Guess I will try again in a few days.


See here: http://pan-am.uniserve.com/pg000031.htm#breeding and maybe it's your light levels: http://pan-am.uniserve.com/pg000031.htm#lighting if you're still stuck, ask here: http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/Meatrabbits/messages

Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiteMountainsRanch 

The bucks are both a year old. I don't know if they have been bred before, I kind of doubt it. I have never seen the first one try to "get on" the doe,


Hmm, does he have spray marks in the cage?  If not, I'd check his butt smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by WhiteMountainsRanch 

but the other one hops on as soon as I put the doe in the cage, just unfortunately, on the wrong end... lol.


That's normal and it can be worse, I have one doe that is not quite clear about her role in this life ;-)  Just leave them to it.  One thing comes to mind tho: I have mine on wood, and an integral part of the courtship seems to be the strategical romantic foot stomp along with a VVVVWWWW sound.  If you're mating on wire, maybe this is what is missing for the particular rabbits that you have?  I'd try to just temporarily stick a sheet of wood into the cage.


Edited by Hoppelchen - 11/2/10 at 8:26pm
post #79 of 205

the bucks should be breeding or wanting to breed, by 14-15 wks of age.   thats early,  but the faster maturing ones will be riding the other rabbits.   by 4 months they need to be seperated. cause they will breed............at one yr of age,  and not breeding...something is wrong.  he may be a she.

post #80 of 205

They both have really big *ahem*... balls. I will try taking them out and breeding them in a large pen that I have on the ground.

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