Lionhead & genetics

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TinysMom

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I wanted to say something about lionhead and genetics here - and then deal with the bacon/hamburger idea that has been shared.

First about lionheads and genetics....I personally don't think that it is necessary any longer to breed lionheads and Netherland Dwarfs together like it used to be. This was done to widen the gene pool (at least that is my understanding) and of course, bring down the size of the lionheads that were being bred from the imported lionheads.

But now - there are enough breeders out there with quality stock - that I don't think a new breeder needs to mess with this unless they have a very specific objective in mind. I do know of one breeder who has years of experience at breeding and she IS doing this - but she is doing it to produce certain colors (chocolate for example) that aren't usually found in lionheads. In that case - I can see the need to bring in the dwarfs. Of course - it helps that I have one of her chocolates!!! But for a new breeder - I personally think it is easier to start with purebred lionheads or even hybrids that are F1, F2 or F3 already. BUT - that is just my personal opinion.

Now - about the hamburger/bacon idea for rabbits....I've been searching through my books to see if I can find this idea mentioned at all....and so far, I have not found it. Since I am a new breeder - I like to "back up" my recommendations with written instructions or reference as to why I recommend something....because I am so new. I hope I can find something that deals with this whole idea of the meat for a doe that kindles.

BUT....I do know of experienced SUCCESSFUL breeders who use this method if they have does that have this problem...and they have been successful with it. You will notice many times - that they will not recommend it for EVERY doe...just certain ones and at certain times.

I think part of the reason I may not have this problem is that during the last 2-3 days of a pregnancy - I try to give my does some calf mana with their food (cut back on their food a tiny bit to replace it with the calf mana). So far...I've had good results with that.

So....for those breeders who are reading the various discussions - I'm going to remind you to think through everything - if you can - find the sources of the information and then decide for yourself what you feel is best. You know your rabbits and you will have to decide who you will trust or what sources you will trust.

Personally - I like to find something referenced in at least two books and not just one...and if it is in an ARBA guide - that really increases my chance of believing what I'm reading because the ARBA folks DO know rabbits - may times better than a vet.

Ok...just had to put in this message as I was bothered the more I thought about how folks might take some posts!

Peg
 

Kadish Tolesa

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Hi, Peg , thanks for your info. about lionheads/genetics and the raw meat questionfor does with cannibalistic tendencies.

The NALRC Lionspeak link/pagehas alot of info.about the mane genes and the F1 - F4 categories. If one or more of my F1's display a significant mane is it advisable to breed them back to a purebred until I have a F4 or more rabbit ?

Later this spring we are hoping to purchase another qualitylionhead buck and at least 1 or 2 does that willbe compatible withthe buck. So I really do not need to breed my F1's at all. I may want to keep the runt, as he/she is fast stealing a place in my heart with its' strange fur color and pattern----kind of a tawny grey andalmost baldexcept for its' head and back of the rump.(?)

This is mygoal and I don't know if it's unrealistic or not. I'd like to show rabbits ; just my own home-bred ones, that is.Although we have a small number of bunnies that would probably do fine on the show tables , I want to show the results of MY work. My wonderful bunniesare the result of someone else's hard work and careful breeding.(Last year and part of this year was spent buyingexcellent breeding stock from breeders in WI, IN, and MI. )

My other 2 netherland dwarfs were bred to a nice, typey netherland d.buck--he's the nicest n.d. I've owned so far ! (not only in looks but in personality :bunnydance::))

It's funny you mentioned calf manna as I was giving my does a little of that, too. I actually keep it on hand for my flemish giants, as a flemish breeder recommended it .

This forum is the best place to come to for rabbit info., IMO !:) Since I'm new to breeding and showing, there will be some (hopefully no too many) mistakes made . Probably the biggest mistake so far was to pay show quality pricefor a bun that had the wrong color eyes ( brown-eyed netherland dwarf, opal )-- I had'nt taken a good enough look at her before buying. My mistake .

Later I called a breeder about the eye color and he said that the doe's babies eye color can be changed in one generation depending on the genetic make-up of the buck. Hmmmm. LOTS to think about !!!!

End of rambling on.:D.

Kadish Tolesa :pink iris:


 

TinysMom

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Kadish Tolesa wrote:
The NALRC Lionspeak link/pagehas alot of info.about the mane genes and the F1 - F4 categories. If one or more of my F1's display a significant mane is it advisable to breed them back to a purebred until I have a F4 or more rabbit ?

Kadish Tolesa :pink iris:

Yes, if you had an F1 that carried significant mane....I'd go ahead and breed it to a lionhead to get an F2 and work from there. I've got to tell you - there is such a good feeling when a rabbit that YOU'VE bred....takes a prize.

Anissa took Best of Breed at show A in Belton, TX in December and I practically screamed. I had deliberately bred Harry who has a wide face and body to Lava who has a great mane and fur. Anissa's major fault is her ears being long - but the judge felt like she would grow into them (she was a junior) - so after a great deal of deliberation (btw- there were rabbits there from Pridelands stock, Cimmaron stock, and I forget what else...) - she won! I was so proud. I think that is why I cried the other morning when she surprised us with a litter - I wanted to show her again in March - but will have to wait for the state show in April so that her litter is weaned.

The big question to ask yourself though - is WHY am I breeding this buck to this doe? Or why am I wanting to breed this F1? Is it for the mane? Body type? etc...

I just don't know that I would bring a ND back into the mix if I didn't need to.

Is there any chance you're going to be at Lionhead Nationals in May at Columbus, OH? That is a great chance to see lionheads....I'm so excited that I can hardly wait. I even have a buck I like a lot and I'm looking at other animals I have too.

Peg
 
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