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1. Rabbit Farming business requires less space and it can be done anywhere at farm, backyard, on terrace or even at home. 2. The capital investment for this is very less. One unit of Rabbits contains 7 females and 3 males. And the cost of unit is just Rs. 19,000/- 3. As Rabbits are vegetarian you can feed almost anything vegetarian to the Rabbit including waste or surplus vegetables from the market, tree leaves, cattle grass or even kitchen scrap. Hence, it is very easy and affordable to feed a Rabbit. 4. No skilled labour is required for this project. 5. As per Indian Law we can not catch, kill or keep a Rabbit as Pet animal. But since 1960, the Government of India has taken initiative in importing Rabbits. Thus growing or keeping Imported Rabbits is authorized by Indian Law. 6. The reproduction capacity of Rabbits is very high. One female Rabbit delivers almost every 30 days and in the first year she delivers 6 to 8 babies per delivery and in the second year she will deliver 15 to 20 baby Rabbits per delivery. 7. The pregnancy and lection period is just 30 days and we keep the baby rabbits with her for 10 to 15 days. That means a female can deliver babies every 45 days, which is very fast growth of reproduction. In five years a mother Rabbit will deliver 34 times. 8. Within 3 months a baby Rabbit gains weight of 2.5 to 4 kgs. Introduction The existence of rabbit with human being remained from the time immemorial. Romans were the first to domesticate wild rabbits. Wild rabbits [oryctolagus cuniculus] gained importance in Roman empire as game animals. Such rabbits were increasingly populated in and around southern Europe, North Africa and Spain. Rabbit raising started in other parts of Europe in the early middle ages but was not accepted as popular animal till 19th century. In Australia and New Zealand, the rabbit population was by and large higher. In North America only feral rabbits were abundant. Wild rabbits were in existence in Chili. There are different views concerning the domestication of rabbits. Some say rabbits were domesticated by 1st century B.C. but others say that the first experiment in domestication of rabbits took place in monasteries of France between 6th and 10th century A.D. Napoleon was regarded as the most famous rabbit breeder of all times. Rabbit keeping in commercial
hill areas. growing of rabbits in other regions of the world have been taken up.A. For the economic growth of our country. . The growing of rabbits is not only for meat purpose but also it should be noted that importance is being offered for their skin and hairs.O. uncultivated lands etc. On world level. In the ancient days rabbits were living in forests. During those times rabbit’s flesh was denoted as ‘Underground Mutton’ and served as a source of food for rural families. Germany and England. From the authentic information noticed.base started in the last century. In European countries the growing of rabbits had been established as one of the bigger business. Thus rabbit farming gradually spread to other countries. But more attention is required to be made to popularize and commercialize the mutton of it. it is calculated that at an average one man consumes 200 grams of rabbit meat per year but it is revealed that in France country only one man consumes 10 kilos of rabbit meat in a year. rabbits are not brought up at home for many years from the ancient days. at present the varieties like white colored New Zealand California. Italy. 16th century onwards. the growing procedure of rabbits in separate cases had been implemented. the rabbits are grown at home only from A. through different package programs encouraged the farmers for rabbit farming. When the ruling of England extended to countries Australia and New Zealand. Only from the middle of current 20th century onwards. Rabbit growing is considered as one of the best aspects. Meat became popular due to it’s excellent quality. Jammu and Kashmir through introduction of German angora breed. the growing of rabbits at those countries had gained momentum. The scarcity of food following first and second world war pave the way for extensive rabbit rearing. In 1977 the government of India took much interest in rabbit raising in states and established a Central Research Station to encourage rabbit farming and to envisage research program to mitigate the problems in rabbit farming. In India from early sixties the rabbit farming gained importance in places like Himachal Pradesh. 85% are produced in European countries. Instead of various colored wild rabbits. The food waste in kitchen and cattle feed are only offered as food to them. White Giant. France. And also rabbits brought up on buildings and cages are provided with special feed of grits. Initially like hens rabbits are brought up small in numbers in backside of the house. Later on F.D. but at present it is famous that rabbit are grown as pet animals in township areas and villages. Like hens. Out of the total rabbit meat production in the world. Now rabbit farming is take up length and breadth of the country. Brawn Giant etc are being grown in greater way. It is revealed through the researches made that during Second World War that when the scarcity of meat was considerably increased. The growing of rabbits was initially taken up in European countries like Spain.
it is revealed that yearly meat production in America is 20 lakhs ton. pigs 16%. are capable of producing 6 to 10 young rabbits. rabbits can be grown in cages. This may also pose scarcity of food to human. The hens does not consume the plants consist of “fibers” but grow by consuming the pulses varieties being utilized by men.6 times. the fanns are established and at present are being run in bigger way on commercial basis. As such. Spain is 1 lakh 40 thousand ton and China is 15 thousand ton. The cholesterol content in rabbit meat is considerably less when compared with the meat of chicken and mutton.8 times and for cows it is only 0. we can produce more meat out of rabbits than from goats. In many parts of Tamil Nadu. With a limited space capacity. catties 12%. As such. Their pregnancy period is only 30 days. Likewise the meat conversion in the case of rabbit worked out to be 20%. other maintenance cost for growing rabbit is considerably less. One rabbit. As such. Rabbits. In view of this. in one time. The rabbits growing procedure is quite easier when compared to that of chicken. Only rabbit meat can be produced by using the feeds consist of excessive quantity of Fibers with lesser production cost. the production of rabbit meat had not reached any marked stage. can have the capacity of yielding 30 to 35 young ones (excluding deaths) towards production of meat. The importance of rabbit growing The animals are being brought up for consuming the unusable botanical products and family covert themselves as a suitable for human being in the shape of meat. The hens brought up for meat. in a span of one year. They never create nuisance to neighbors by way of abnormal sound and bad odor. converts protein energy out of the food consumed by them to the extent of 23%. one female rabbit. As such rabbit meat is quite suitable for the aged and the persons affected by blood pressure . Soviet is 2 lakhs 20 thousand ton. rabbits are capable of converting the botanical protein energy in to meat. Since last 10 year or so. expenditure towards the feed for hens increases.As per the statistics. In India. in a period of one year. the farms growing rabbits are not the increase. England imports rabbit meat for china. it is quite suitable to grow rabbits in the high population prevailing township areas and in the backyard of the houses. Whereas the yield of meat in the goat calculated out to be only 0. produces meat 15 to 35 times of its body weight. in a year. Due to this. rabbits never pose such problems to the owners in the rabbit farms. Next to hens. Italy is 1 lakh 80 thousand ton. The requisite young rabbits for the farm can be obtained throughout the month rabbits available with them Rabbits are not being affected by climate conditions or insects developing diseases like in the case of chickens. Due to increase in the habit of eating rabbit meat. Like in poultry farms where the owners running behind for the chickens from the places where the hatching of eggs are done. France is 2 lakhs 1 ton.
Thus replenish vitamins and cellulose content of feases. those affected by ulcer. Life span of rabbit is about seven to eight years.and heart problems. When compared to the stool of other animals. Residual feed. In the rabbit meat the proportion of meat is high. which can be achieved in 12 to 15 weeks. They are called pseudo ruminant. as such. Special features of rabbit Rabbits are midway between ruminants and monogastric animals. They can convert cellulose into meat and can easily survive on kitchen scrap. Female may produce five to eight youngs which attain sexual maturity in four to six months. The meat yield out of rabbits with same weight will be more when compared to that of chickens. In the hospitals in foreign countries the rabbit meat is provided to those recouping from the disease. Slaughter weight of rabbit is about 2 kg. Rabbit farming can also provide a very valuable additional source of income in the rural areas. rewarding and takes little space compared to other livestock activities. 40 to 50 kgs. The advantages of rabbit farming:i) ii) iii) iv) v) vi) vii) viii) Rabbits are highly prolific in nature Consume a large amount of forages from diverse origins and so can be reared on small amounts of costly concentrates. Scope for rabbit farming and it’s national importance: Rabbit farming is another livestock activity with great scope as it is relatively easy. Their gestation period ranges to 31 days. Another important consideration is food production . of manure are available through a rabbit. together with rabbit manure is highly suitable for vermicompost which in turn provides excellent manure for fertilizing the fields. Apart from providing wool rabbits also provides income from manure etc. The rabbit skin is used for making dress. hand gloves etc. They are prolific breeder. They breed eight times in a year. The rabbit’s bowel waste can be used as good manure. the skin of rabbits will also fetch good price. They are coprophagous in nature they reinvest their faeces in the early hours of morning directly from their anus through lips. Bone content will be less [5:1]. allergy and dyspepsia. purse. ornaments. six months after the establishment of farm Income generation at quarterly interval makes the repayment easy. They can be reared in the kitchen garden/backyard of farmer’s house Initial investment cost is low Quick returns i. the rabbit’s stool increases the ventilation in the soil and has efficiency to increase the water holding capacity. Rabbits have got fast reproductive process and are able to remate within 24 hours of giving birth [kindling]. Apart from meat.e. Per year. there are feasibilities of obtaining good profits by organizing rabbit farm.
approach road. Keep the shed/pens clean by regular cleaning and disinfection to make it free from flies/mosquitoes and a foot dip should be maintained at the entrance of the sheds. * For small size rabbit farms hutch system may be adopted which is a self contained cage-cum-nest box with it’s own roof. Rabbit cages should be cleaned regularly. Rabbitry roofing should be preferably of asbestos. where the scope for other livestock activities is very limited.cycle. feed. Therefore. * Feeders and waterers should be cleaned regularly and mash feed . • • • • • • • • • In case of larger farms cages may be arranged inside the sheds in single or two tier under hanging or step wise rack system. In case of open hutches proper fencing should be provided to protect the rabbits from their predators. thatch or other locally available cheaper materials. supply of breeding stock. For producing high quality woollens. Location and Housing: • Areas having temperature ranging between 10o C and 20o C and relative humidity ranging between 55 and 65% throughout the year are ideal for rearing Angora rabbits. Construct sheds in such a way that predators and birds do not enter the shed. However. Further. Good strains of rabbits suitable to our climatic conditions were developed with the constant efforts of North Temperate Regional Station (NTRS) of the Central Sheep and Wool Research Institute (CSWRI). which shows that rabbit need not be in competition with man for it’s food. Angora rabbit can be reared only in hill areas. it has created adequate infrastructure for training of the interested farmers for taking up the rabbit farming on scientific lines. Ensure adequate facility for clean water. currently we are importing the fine wool. Kullu and management practices were standardised . electricity. During kindling period cage/hutch nest box should be kept clean so that kits do not pick up diseases like coccidia. veterinary aid and nearness to market for sale of wool and meat of culled animals. fodders. Angora rabbit rearing is a boon to the farmers of hill areas. Garsa. The wool produced by Indian sheep breeds are of not fine quality. Provide adequate floor space per rabbit. The other livestock species which is source of wool is sheep. The wool from Angora Rabbits is of very high quality and it’s blending with carpet wool of sheep and silk improves the quality of woollens to a great extent. Therefore. blending with other fine quality fibres is essential. Construct rat proof civil structures for feed and wool storage. wood. especially disinfected before kindling.
* Water should be available round the clock particularly to a lactating doe. Feeding: Production performance depends upon the quality of feed offered. • • • The watering equipment of 400-500 ml.The rim of the feeders should be round and turned inward ½” so that the rabbits do not spill the feed/water. Equipment: • Use scientifically designed cages and equipment. faeces or water. berseem. roots such as cassava. Always keep water pots clean and remove sediments daily. If concentrate and hay are given. The ideal guage for floor of the cage is 1416 with a mesh size of 19×19 mm or 25×13 mm. * The feeders should be designed and placed in such a manner that the feed can be poured from outside and should be 5-7. cane and bamboo leaves. carrots. beefs and turnips inedible portions of cabbage and cauliflower etc. feed is given at a time for many days.e. 16-20 with a mesh size of 25x25mm. earthen or any other locally available cheaper material may be used. For high production levels balanced pellet feed in combination with hay should be given. • • If whole pellet is fed. * A practical combination of different types of feeds and regular timetable for feeding is advisable so that rabbits do not feel any stress due to changes in their daily routine. cutup pieces of the stalks of plants such as maize or banana. The walls and roof can be constructed with lighter guage i. above the cage floor to avoid contamination by urine. Use of properly designed Automatic watering equipment can also be made. capacity made up of aluminum. Fresh green plants like bean. can replace partially or wholly pellet feeds in case of low input and low output production system. grass. Water pots should be cleaned thoroughly every week. Breeding Management: The average age at first mating is about 5-7 months and it varies with the physical maturity of individual rabbit and also breed. • • • • • • • • Always give fresh and clean drinking water. yams.should be removed from the feeders which can be used for feeding other livestock species. . then concentrate should be offered preferably in the morning and hay in the afternoon. Mating should be done either early in the morning or in the evening. tender banana. The doe is to be taken to the buck cage and never vice-versa The breeding should be planned in such a way that about 3 to 4 litters per doe are obtained per year during multiplicative stage. Alfalfa.5 cm.
Rabbit cages should be disinfected with blow lamp after every shearing and kindling cages before the doe is shifted and after weaning. Proper ventilation should be provided.• • • The nest box is kept in the cage around 25th day of pregnancy with loosened jute wool or wood shavings. Male rabbits can be used for mating until they are about three years. After three years. balanced feed and fresh clean water are essential to prevent chances of infection. * Weaning should be done at 5th or 6th week after kindling. Care of young ones: • • • • • • • • • • • • The nest box should be removed after 5 weeks of kindling. Clean sanitary conditions of rabbit cages. Over crowding should be avoided. No sudden change in feed is advisable. The rabbits should be prevented from coming in contact with the feaces. If the bedding becomes wet it should be replaced by a fresh and clean one. In order to prevent inbreeding depression rabbits from the same family should not be bred. Kits should be examined and dead ones should be removed daily. Burn dead sick rabbits at once to keep the diseases from spreading. The bedding of the nest box should be burnt after use. Flies which may act as carriers of the infection should be kept under control in the rabbitry. sheds and equipment. replace male rabbit about once every year. the full grown female rabbits should be replaced either by new purchases or females of own farm. Disease prevention/control: . Therefore.
They are also poisonous to them feeding them twice a day (day and night) is sufficient. 6. goose grasses and wont stop munching which Is a very good exercise for its teeth. Cabbages. Milk: Feeding them will enrich the rabbits with proteins and fats which is necessary for them. 4. creeping butter cup which rabbits don't eat. Fruits: Apple is the most favorite fruit of rabbits. . People try feeding rabbits with lettuce.The Best 6 Rabbit Food 1. they don't prefer to eat any other fruits and apple is rich in vitamins. 2. Pellets: Pellets should be fed from the time of their birth. Peas given half boiled and the whole mixture and makes the meal filled with richness vitamins and carbohydrates. cow parsnip. These Rabbit food are available at the grain stores.. And it is a soft fruit so gets easily digested. Its hard to control when it starts grazing around so keep them under control. Vegetables: Brussels sprouts. 3. They drink a lot of water and one needs to keep changing the water in the bowl as it wont drink again the water that was left. Pod spinach. Comfrey. Turnip. Carrots. Oats. Corns. Coltsfoot. Bran mashed up together with Luke warm milk will be a big nutritious treat for the rabbits. This is very important as it helps in the growth of rabbit. But the rabbit food should be served like once in two days. yew. This is said to be the rabbit's favorite and they never get bored of it. 5. Grasses: Rabbits love to go around the garden and grab the green grasses like Agrimony. Cauliflower. Too much of carbohydrates as part of the rabbit food diet is not good. Mashing of boiled potatoes with the peel has a lot of carbohydrates and should be fed very less. radish. They should be given with a whole meal bread which should be toasted and baked in oven to make it crisp as rabbits prefer dry food. Cereals and hay: Maize.