10-Week Meat Rabbit Weights

Well, the two litters from Squeak and Pearl are ten weeks old today!  Or, maybe, yesterday, by the time I actually hit “Publish”.  Since meat rabbit fryers are generally processed between the ages of ten and twelve weeks, I wanted to get a good idea of how they were doing weight-wise.  With your actual meat rabbit breeds producing ideally 5-pound fryers at that age, I was naturally hoping that we might be close to that weight.  In reality, though, these are not actual meat rabbit breeds; they are the offspring of, initially, a minilop (hey, he was a rescue, you have to start somewhere!) and a Flemish giant cross that topped out a little over 6 pounds.  Am I going to get 5-pound rabbits at 10-12 weeks from this line?  Uh…. no.  :D

So anyway, we weighed every bunny in both litters today, and this is what we have so far:

Pearl’s litter weighs 3 lb 1 oz, 3 lb 4 oz, 3 lb 5 oz, 3 lb 8 oz, 3 lb 9 oz, and 3 lb 4 oz.  Their average weight is 3 pounds, 5 ounces.

Squeak’s litter has been at the feed trough a little more.  They weigh 3 lb 7 oz, 3 lb 8 oz, 3 lb 9 oz, 3 lb 4 oz, 4 lb 3 oz (!), and 3 lb 15 oz.  Their average weight is 3 pounds, 10 ounces.  The little porker at 4 lb, 3 oz is the last bunny pictured in the post, “The two litters at 6 weeks!”.  Fittingly, it is pigging out on food in the picture.

One interesting thing about this is actually the fact that Squeak’s litter is heavier than Pearl’s.  Squeak and Pinto both have Thumper, the minilop, as their father.  Squeak is smaller than Pearl.  I would expect Pearl’s litter to be heavier, since only the father, Pinto, is a minilop cross.  With Squeak’s litter, both mother and father are minilop crosses.  I suppose I will never understand rabbit genetics!

The average for both litters is 3 pounds, 8 ounces.  Not bad, considering these are just mutts with no meat rabbit background.  :)  Guess we’ll weigh again at 12 weeks and hope they’re close enough at that point.  I really don’t want to butcher rabbits again that are old enough to have the skin thoroughly stuck to the meat!  That was difficult!


Comments

10-Week Meat Rabbit Weights — 9 Comments

    • That’s true, I hadn’t thought about it. :) That would be the one to keep if I was going to. Our rabbitry is now maxed out! I have 7 cages. Pinto, the working buck, is in one. Thumper, now retired, is actually in the “bully cage”, a 24″ x 24″ that I had planned to keep unused unless I needed to segregate someone. At least he’s a minilop, so he’s not very big.

      Then I have Pearl and Squeak (each with her own cage), and now Fluffy and Nibbles, who share a cage. Hope that works out when Fluffy has a litter!

      And finally, I have two growout cages, each with a litter. The piggie is actually in Squeak’s dirty litter, unfortunately, so even if I was looking to keep one, I’d probably have to pass because of cleanliness issues. :( But I actually don’t have room to keep one, anyhow.

  1. I also like rabbits and I have 2 pairs and I have a pregnant right now. The growth rate of rabbit is just like rats wherein they can reproduce twice or three times a year. I guess they are on the same category that’s why. Hmmm

    • There are some similarities between rabbits and rats; however, they actually are not even classified in the same order. They used to be, but as of a hundred years ago, they and similar animals were recognized as distinct from rodents. Rabbits belong to the order Lagomorpha, rats to Rodentia.

      One thing they do have in common with rats, though, is their ability to produce litters several times a year, as you mentioned! This makes them attractive as a meat animal. Good luck with your rabbits! :)

  2. Do not use the oatmeal as a substitute for regular feed and do not feed to rabbits that do not need assistance with weight gain because this will make them fat.

    Frederick Slim

  3. oatmeal and other grains can make an excellent substitution for pellets. They aren’t by any means a complete feed, but for short term usage it is perfectly fine to use.

    • I have used oatmeal, wheat berries, black oil sunflower seed, and bird food to get my bunnies by for a day or two until I can get feed. Whatever I have on hand, or is easy and inexpensive to get quickly. I don’t do this often, normally I have food on hand. It’s only happened a few times. I have to drive a fair piece to get food, so I can’t just run over there.

      The rabbits seem to enjoy a short culinary adventure like that while waiting for me to get their pellets again, and just a day or two of oatmeal doesn’t make them fat.

  4. Awesome, I don’t think we will get any type of genetics. My wife has blue eyes, and I have brown eyes. We have five children and all of our children have brown eyes.

    According to current genetics we should have had one child with blue eyes, but we didn’t. I told my wife we keep trying until we have a blue eyed child. She didn’t like that thought to much.

    All sarcasm intended on the last two sentences.

    • Hahaha!!! Genetics is a funny thing.

      My husband has blue eyes, and I have hazel eyes. Hazel is dominant over blue, so our children really should not have had anything but hazel eyes. They both have blue — the same steely-grey as their father.

      It’s the same way with his siblings. It doesn’t matter what color eyes their spouses have, the blue wins out.

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