Saturday, August 14, 2010

Bunnies For Sale

I have three nice little bucks for sale at the moment. After evaluating most of the babies from the last batch that was weaned, I set several aside to keep and observe a little longer, while others will go up for sale immediately.

Lately I have been setting stricter guidelines for myself as far as what gets sold from my rabbitry, so at this point I no longer sell unshowable rabbits with the rare exception of those who end up with a non-genetic DQ such as missing toes, tails, and so on (from accidents at birth and overzealous diapering by mom:)). I have always worried about passing unwanted traits into the French Angora gene pool, and since I am selling more babies each year it has become very important (IMO) for me to restrict what goes in and out of my barn and into the genetics of the breed.

I have always tried to sell rabbits that were solid, thrifty, and functional, but I also sold babies on occasion with faults that would not necessarily earn high placements at shows (for ex. rabbits that were hippy, lacking in depth, or lower in the shoulders, etc). I have always explained faults to the customer buying the rabbit so they knew what they were getting, but I would have preferred to have always sent out top-notch rabbits so that anything getting bred would have a stronger than average chance of passing on the best possible traits.

Unfortunately it is tough to produce perfect rabbits all the time (LOL!) so naturally a period of building happens in this hobby where you are able to produce a few great rabbits who do well on the table, but the larger majority for a long time end up being bunnies that are still nice and may do well for someone somewhere, but the quality can't be boosted enough to breed good ones and sell them very often. In the beginning it seems reasonable to expect a ratio of about 20% keepers to 80% culls, but as a line improves and gets more 'concentrated', this ratio tends to shift until there are more good ones than bad ones suddenly, and the ones you once held as 'cream of the crop', now become rabbits you would sell in favor of others coming along with more highly evolved traits.

Anyway, I seem to have reached a point where my herd has become very stable and is producing animals lately that can push the boundaries of what I used to own a little further. It was a very tough couple of years with the NZ/FA experiment I was doing that at first did not seem to bear fruit, and even worse before that was the enteritis outbreak I had where literally 1/2 to 3/4 of every litter I bred died (a long story with a happy ending that I will definitely get into once I have more time:)). After several years of hitting walls everywhere, everything fell into place suddenly and the line I wanted was finally within reach. The NZs are fully incorporated at last with great benefits to type, vigor, and breeding/mothering, and the enteritis problem is over and solved so that virtually every baby born is living and thriving.

There were enough nice bunnies weaned over the last couple of months here that I had trouble knowing who to get rid of, LOL. There were a large number of buns sold in spring and summer, but now there are a few left over from the better breedings that I wanted to post, too. Below are pictures of bucks from 3 different litters with details and descriptions:

-Sable Pearl buck (born 6/8/10)
-Sire: Spang's Giacomo
-Dam: Spang's Margaux
-Large buck with very good type and wool. Will make excellent showrabbit.
-Price: $100

-Sable buck (born 6/1/10)
-Sire: Spang's Anton
-Dam: Spang's Diana
-Also very large with exc. bone and outstanding wool. Not as much depth as SP but still very balanced. Will make great showrabbit or wooler.
-Price: $100

-Tort buck (born 5/30/10)
-Sire: Spang's Diego
-Dam: Spang's Carmen
-Well-balanced buck with good type who will also have a nice, dense, senior coat. Will make great showrabbit.
-Price: $100

Please email with questions, and there will be more bunnies posted as I continue to evaluate litters.

Have a great week!

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