I was just wondering anyone that raises meat rabbits do you keep records? Each one of my does gets her own sheet of when she was breed, nesting box date, kindle date, number of litter size, rebreed projected date and when the kits are to be weaned. I also number the litters with a letter for the year and numbers so first litter was A-1 next A-2 so on. I also note on the back weights of the litter. I find this to be a pretty efficient method. For example one of my does had a litter of 9 and made her nest on time while the other made hers last minute and kindled a day later then expected and only had 5 kits. How ever doe #2 five kits are clearly larger then their two day older. This could be due to the smaller litter size or just the doe genetics all around. I plan to weigh them and log the progress to see what the size difference is and this will help me decide which litter I want to keep a doe from for next year. It wasn't until finding the youtube channel Living Traditions Homestead that I consider raising meat rabbits for myself and they went into detail about their record keeping and it really helped me as well. I always like learning how others manage their livestock and always happy to lend information when able.
That's a great practice Hunter, and a necessary step for excelling in animal husbandry. Unfortunately it's a lost practice in many cases, but it's good to see people who still carry on the traditions of proper bread maintenance and improvement. Keep up the good work, and if you also perfect your genetic lines to the excellence of breed standard conformation, you'll eventually have champion lines to market as breeder stock.
Absolutely! I no longer raise meat rabbits, I've switched to Angoras, but I used to raise new zealands and standard rex. It was very important to keep records. By knowing which does consistently had large litters and high survival rates I could cull out non productive does, and bucks, as I listed those as well. I also kept records of their weights and time to butcher. Those with the best weight increases in the shortest times were spared from slaughter and used to breed the next generation. I actually increased my 16 week butcher weight by 14 oz after a few years! Another one was dressed and non dressed weight, that helped me know which lines produced nice fine boned heavy carcasses, vs heavy boned carcasses. That was a measurement I added later on though once I had improved other issues. I have found that no matter what you are raising, records are always an important part of animal husbandry.
Magnolia Knoll Farms
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