Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Satin Story

We don't talk about our Satins very much because our focus is always on our Mini Lops. But they have been a vital part of this rabbitry for almost two years now, so shouldn't I talk about how they came about in the first place? In 2004 I got the "commercial breed" bug. I wanted to raise a large breed of rabbit. I began my quest for Californian or NZW rabbits, but when found that those rabbits are not available in quality in my area, I turned to another breed. At our local fair in 2005 I found my self constantly gazing at the Satin rabbits. I had never really paid attention to them before except that they were big. I did some research and found out they were good meat rabbits, came in a variety of colors and had an awesome feel to their fur. I was hooked, this is the breed I wanted to raise!

I knew I had an awesome Satin breeder near me, and I contacted him around October. He didn't have anything for sale so I waited. March 2006 he e-mailed me and asked if I was still interested in Satins, and of course I was! He gave me two black intermediate does to start out with. I named them Jessica Simpson and Sarah Jessica Parker. In May, I was able to have them bred for Meat pens for county fair. I had them bred to a black buck "Bench". They kindled 7 & 8 kits each, all blacks and raised them successfully for fair. Thier meats pens were 1st in Open, Champion, Reserve Champion and 3rd in youth. I also had the Best single freyer. We put 15 juniors and SJP into the freezer that summer. We kept the feet, tails, pelts and I gave my dogs the heart, kidney, livers and lungs. There was very little to discard. We kept one of the junior does, we named her Brittney Spears. In the meantime, I purchased Porky, a broken red buck from Melissa Magee in Crescent City. He would serve as our herd buck. In December I bought a mate for Porky, a red doe and I also picked up a copper doe from the Fenton family at the Red Bluff show.

I bred the Satins in January of 2007, giving me two litters in Feb. Jessica had 5 and Brittney had 3. I sold Brittney's broken buck and Jessica to a Satin breeder here in Grants Pass. "Bandit" won BOB in Crescent City earlier this month! I kept one of Jessica's babies, which I still have today. "PJ" has turned into an awesome doe! It just amazes me how she has turned out.

Around March, I decided the reds and coppers were just not going to work out for me. I sold Porky, Ilana [+ her two does], Sanetti, Brittney [bred] to a nice lady up in Eugene. I miss Porky, I miss him a lot. But hopefully he has a nice home and is being used more often for reds. With that sale, it left me with one Satin in the barn, "PJ". I had decided I wanted to do black & blue [broken/solid] varieties only.

So, I contacted Roger, and I did have to wait a while for him to sift through 175 juniors so I could come and pick a couple out. I took a trip over there this July and picked out three Satins. A black doe [who looks very nice!], a broken doe and I even came home with a black buck. I thought the buck was pretty stinkin nice, so he came home with us too :) So currently my Satin herd stands at 4. I doubt there will ever be a day that there will be more than 5 seniors. And most likely, with me going off to college, the Satins may be non-exsistent after next year. My true love falls within my Mini Lops, and where I have a strong hold onto the Satins, I always have access to great stock. There truly are great Satin rabbits here in the northwest :)

Boog will be 7 months old in December and we are going to try to breed him to our three does. We are going through Satin-baby withdrawls!

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