The Hares

American Blue and White | American Chinchilla

When we first got into rabbits we knew that we wanted hardy, adaptable, and productive animals. Most of the stock available was show rabbits, nothing wrong with show rabbits but they just didn’t have the traits we were looking for. With Eric’s grandfather and mother both raising rabbits, it wasn’t long before it was our time to raise them too. With our involvement with The Livestock Conservancy and rabbits on the Conservancy Priority List, it was exactly what we needed. 

 

While we have raised several different breeds, we currently raise the American Chincilla (Eric’s favorite) and the American Blue and White (Callene's favorite). 

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The Chinchilla rabbit was developed to replicate the fur of the South American Chinchilla. It was so popular as a fur breed that between November 1928 to November 1929, over 17,000 Chinchilla rabbits were registered with the American Rabbit and Cavy Breeders Association.

 

There are three Chinchilla breeds, the Standard, the Giant, and the American, and while they have different weight standards, they all share the same beautiful fur. While at first glance the rabbit appears speckled, it is the precise placement of five individual rings on each hair that gives it the unique shading.

 

American Chinchilla was also useful as a meat breed, with bucks weighing 9-11 lbs and does 10-12.

 

With the decline of the fur industry, the Chinchilla breeds fell out of favor, kept alive by a few dedicated breeders.

 

The American Blue and White Rabbit is one of the oldest breeds developed in the United States. As the population of the United States itself, the American rabbit is a melting pot of several different breeds.

 

Developed as a dual purpose fur and meat breed, the American is a fast-growing, laid back rabbit, with does reaching an idea senior weight of eleven pounds and bucks, ten.

 

Lewis Salisbury of California developed the American Blue in 1917, and the breed immediately became hugely popular, with a breeding age doe priced at an unheard of $25. The white variety was introduced in 1925.


 

Rabbits were a mainstay of the family farm until after WWII when the dramatic shift from the farm to the city left many breeds languishing and becoming rare. With the development of commercial strains and crosses, the American became the rarest breed of rabbit in the united states.

 

The American exhibits a "mandolin" type body, which means that it looks rather like a mandolin turned upside down. It has a long loin, which is the best cut of meat.

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