Monday, November 10, 2008

Raising rabbits?

OK, so today I have been learning about raising meat rabbits. Apparently, rabbit meat has fewer calories per pound than any other meat, has very little cholesterol, and *surprise!* tastes like chicken.

From my research, I have learned that meat rabbits can dress out around 4-5 pounds in 8-11 weeks. That is a lot of meat in a very short time. And considering that the average litter is 5-8 kits, that is more than 20 pounds of meat every three months with only 1 breeding doe. I have also read that to start a family sized meat operation you would only need 1 buck and 3 does. So that would be 60 pounds of meat every quarter, that is 240 pounds a year! I am thinking that is a very cost effective feed to meat ratio.

And rabbits can be kept in 5 foot square elevated cages to keep predators out and make cleaning the cages easier. They are also very quiet so as to not disturb the neighbors. Another little tidbit I learned is that rabbit manure is the only manure that does not have to be aged before use as fertilizer. So straw from under the cages can go directly into the garden or flower bed. Cool, huh?

The pelts can be tanned for numerous uses as well. I can think of gloves and hats just for starters.

So just about anyone can raise rabbits for meat. They take up very little space, breed like, well, rabbits, and are a very healthy choice when it comes to meat.

I wonder if I can talk my husband in to building me some rabbit cages?

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