Just a few pics from the 4-H Project Show. It is good family fun, and a great learning experience. We are considering a new breed for our Bunny Barn….Holland Lops. We have never raised a small breed rabbit, but we are excited to try. We are hoping that a smaller breed will be easier for Elinor and Sophia to manage. Our Satins are a large breed meat rabbit…weighing about 10 pounds.
We have also been discussing breeding our rabbits for meat. So far we have only showed our stock, but hopefully this fall we can begin to breed for food! A friend told me that there are excellent YouTube instructional videos for butchering rabbits. My dad also knows how to do this. We tried once, but I backed out. It’s hard to butcher a rabbit that has a name…different strategy next time.
When choosing a breed it is good to know what you desire from the rabbit project. Do you want a pet, a meat rabbit, a show rabbit, or you may want to become a breeder and sell your stock. Gourmet restaurants buy rabbit from reputable breeders. And small breed rabbits sell well during the Easter and Christmas season. Also it is good to research how to house your animal. We have hanging cages. Rabbits are not heat tolerant animals, and that makes keeping them alive in the summer months a difficult job. We have fans installed in the barn, and a sprinkler on the barn roof that comes on during the hottest part of the day.
Rabbit droppings are an excellent fertilizer for your garden as well. It is not hot, therefore you can just spread it on the garden without drying it or letting it sit. It is impossible to burn up your garden with rabbit droppings.
These are just a few things to consider when deciding if rabbits are right for you.
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Our two youngest children teamed up to raise Holland Lops for a few years! They were hoping to make some money from the project – I think they sold two rabbits. The first doe they had was not a good mother, and all the bunnies died. 😦 But it was a lot of fun having those rabbits around. Your children are very blessed!