Meat Rabbits - something other than CA, NZ, or FW?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by mom2jedi, Mar 14, 2011.

  1. mom2jedi

    mom2jedi Songster

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    Aug 12, 2008
    San Diego, CA
    So here's the deal. Looking into raising meat rabbits probably in about a year or so and I know the usual breeds are the three I listed. CA and NZ are readily available in my area (FW are a little hard to come by) so I could get those if I wanted but I would rather have something other than white. I did a little research online and discovered standard rexes and Silver Foxes are both used for meat (there were others but I like the look of those the best). I have wanted mini rexes for years (lots of those available locally) but they are not as good for meat production (or would they work & you just need more of them?).

    What I'm wondering is, anyone have any experience raising either of these breeds for meat? I'm also thinking if I have extra kits, they could be sold as pets. I'm not looking to breed for pets, just enough so we have meat for our family but if we have extras it's an option.

    The problem is, neither of these breeds are available here. Anyone know how I would go about getting some? Would the Fair be a good place to possibly find breeding trios? If it ends up we can't get these, I don't mind going with the typical meat rabbit but I'd like to try finding these first.

    I'm sure being in a major city there are rabbit shows independent of the Fair but I have had no luck finding them. Maybe one of the breeders on here would know of one in my area?

    Thanks everyone!

    ETA I forgot, I am willing to pay for nice lined rabbits so they are good quality as well as have a pedigree in case I sell any for pets.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2011
  2. magoochie

    magoochie Songster

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    My husband and I are actually getting into meat rabbits this year too. We are going to tractor supply today and getting the cages. A guy up the road from us that we bought chickens from is selling meat rabbits. He has CA and NZ. We are planning to get 2 does and 1 buck to start.

    I dont know anything about the other breeds to mentioned. They say the white ones are best for butchering. And we really dont care about the color of them since they are going in the freezer anyway.

    Sorry I couldnt be of more help on the other breeds.
     
  3. dutchhollow

    dutchhollow Songster

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    May 13, 2008
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    We raised satins for a few years, my dd showed them we sold culls for meat. They have nice temperments, are good moms. The easiest way to find any of the breeds you mention is to go the the arba website, then look at shows for your area, they also have breeder listings.
     
  4. Jamie_Dog_Trainer

    Jamie_Dog_Trainer Songster

    Jul 8, 2008
    Washington State
    I have my bunnies on hold with two different breeders now to make my meat rabbit herd. I have one Champange D'Argent, one California and one New Zealand (my buck is the NZ). In my research and looking for suitable meat rabbits in my area there were a few "new" breeds I'd never heard of. New to me anyway. Americans were a breed I'd never heard of and the breeder with these said her stock had better meat to bone ratio than the Cali X NZ. I spoke with a woman a few days ago who had Satins and she said she liked them better than any of her other meat bunnies -- and she told me she has "had them all". Also large Rex were spoken highly of. In the end I got the breeds I did because I want to experiment wtih them to see what we like best.

    I have had two offers of bunny stud service for both my Champange and Cali for a couple purebred litters -- an offer I will definately take up because it gives me a chance to see how the purebred bunnies do without having to house/feed/manage a larger number of rabbits than I personally want to take care of.

    I hope this helps you. [​IMG]
     
  5. mom2jedi

    mom2jedi Songster

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    San Diego, CA
    Quote:Definitely helps! How did you find a breeder that would hold bunnies for you? I'm having trouble finding breeders for these breeds period. I like the D'Argents as well but like the rex and fox a little more. Not that it would help, can't find D'Argents here either.

    I tried looking at the ARBA website and it doesn't help me much in So Cal. No breeders for the breeds I'm looking for and no shows close enough either. Most of them are in central CA or further north.
     
  6. classicsredone

    classicsredone Songster

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    Rexes are great. The mini rexes can get to a decent size for butchering, but you'd get more meat with a standard. I haven't had to cull any, by my cousins culled any that didn't go in the breeding program for their freezer.
     
  7. TACEYPERKINS

    TACEYPERKINS Songster

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    Medford,Oregon
    Hi I used to raise rexes they were awsome meat rabbits. I actually crossed a Flemish giant with a rex to make a nice big meat rabbit. As to where to find them. I have been seeing them advertised on craigs list. The Rexes, were from a guy that sells alot of them. I will see if I wrote down the # some where. And just keep looking on craigs list for the post.
    Another thought on where to get them, check local 4-h and FFA clubs. Kids with rabbit projects would love to sell some to you, I know I did.
     
  8. Akane

    Akane Crowing

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    Yahoo groups and the show listing on arba.net are the best places to find a specific breed. Each district has a yahoo group usually with lots of people. You can also search for yahoo groups to specific breeds ( I belong to 2 mini rex, champagne d'argent, creme d'argent, and chinchilla rabbit groups). You can also try asking in the craigslist livestock section since you are looking for meat animals but you often have to specifically state you are looking for rabbits as livestock for meat or the flag happy psychos will get it taken down. Then there is hoobly.com and kijiji.com but they are more for finding and selling pets (good place for your extra rabbits).
     
  9. Duck Keeper

    Duck Keeper Songster

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    Out in the Boonies
    I have English Spots, which are sort of a scrawny breed, but any that aren't showable or actually worth keeping I will occasionally do up. Yes, there's not a crazy amount of meat on them, but it's a rabbit. Pretty much all rabbits are small. [​IMG]
    Rabbits are really easy to process if you have the strength to just take the skin in each hand and pull it off the carcass.
    It only takes a few minutes per each one.
     

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