Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The New Girls

Some of you may know I've been wanting to raise meat rabbits for a while now. I spent lots of time debating it, planning it, thinking about it. I got a rabbit in June, and she turned out to be a he. Then I got another rabbit in September and she also turned out to be a male! Turns out after strike 2, it becomes your goal in life to be able to successfully tell a male rabbit from a female rabbit.

So, I searched Craigslist and asked around at the feedstore. Rabbits were in the back of my mind, and every day when I fed the two bucks I was reminded how I was really supposed to have female rabbits, because males don't tend to spontaneously reproduce.

I had been having trouble finding meat rabbits in the area, and the few I did find were too pricey for me. I didn't want to spend too much since I was just starting out. Since I knew we were heading down to NC after Christmas to visit Becky and Mom, I searched on the Craigslist in their area. And what luck! I found a listing for 6 week old baby New Zealand rabbits. I sent an email and left a voicemail explaining that I lived in Maryland and could they please save one female (and make sure it was a female) for me and I would come get it after Christmas pretty pretty please??? Well, the man I spoke with sounded very nice and he told me he would save me a rabbit. I didn't want to get my hopes up, because I know there are so many people who use Craigslist that say they'll show up but never do, or they'll send you an email and try to scam you, etc. I was so worried someone would want to buy all the rabbits, and honestly I wouldn't have blamed him if he'd sold them all if someone was there with cash in hand. But, lucky me, he still had a few rabbits left by the time we made it down to NC!

Becky, David, and I loaded up on Friday morning and headed a half hour up the road to get the rabbit (at that point I was thinking I was just going to get one). We got to this house and were greeted by the nicest couple. They'd gotten rabbits as a project for their teenage son, but the whole family soon got involved. They had the nicest hutches, and the rabbits were so well cared for. The rabbits were all very friendly, and that is a big plus for me! So, after chatting with them for a while, I decided to get 2 rabbits. After all, it was hard for me to find such nice rabbits here in Maryland, and I didn't want to get home and regret only getting one. I even got a lesson in rabbit sexing from the breeder, and it was a huge relief to know I wasn't getting more males. :-)

So now the rabbits are home, after spending a few days in my sister's shower, and then taking an 8 hour car trip up north.


They're in the barn in my chick pen until I can get a nice hutch built for them. Hopefully they'll be content to stay in the pen for a while.


They're really cute, and I can just barely tell them apart since one is slightly bigger.




They're really friendly. I sat with them for a while today and they came up and were very curious about me.


Finally I got my rabbits! I'll breed them to my big buck later this summer when they're old enough. Tomorrow I'll do an update on my other two rabbits.

6 comments:

Allison at Novice Life said...

Awe they are adorable! So how long can you breed a rabbit for? As in, how many years can they reproduce until they'd be considered 'too old'!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your new does and blessings on your rabbit raising venture! We have Californians for meat, and love raising them.

@ Allison- The "average" doe can raise litters successfully for about 3 years, and bucks can breed does for about 6 to 9 years.

-Patty @ North Forest Farm (computer is still messed up, and won't usually let me comment as myself)

Jonathan S. Miller said...

They're so cute and look happy in their new digs. :) I almost miss having them in my shower... almost. ha! I'm glad you finally found great rabbits... girl rabbits! :)

Jonathan S. Miller said...

Blogger doesn't want to let me sign in as me (Becky). I'll try to fix it later. :)

katiegirl said...

Thanks for answering that, Patty! I wasn't sure what the answer was.

Becky, I usually know it's you!

Deb said...

They are so pretty hon! I can't wait to see newborn babies! Maybe one of my trips, you'll have little ones for me to love on. Love, Momma

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