Flemish Giant mix for eating?

UnlabeledMama

Exploring the pasture
Joined
May 16, 2013
Messages
45
Reaction score
1
Points
17
Location
Western North Carolina
I have been told that Flemish Giants are too big boned and slow growing for meat eating. But what about a Flemish mix? For instance Flemish/NZ?
 

animalmom

Herd Master
Joined
Dec 19, 2009
Messages
1,732
Reaction score
1,731
Points
323
Location
North Central Texas
I suppose you could use a Flemish doe with a NZ buck... but why as the NZ is a meaty breed on their own. NZ/Californian cross makes a nice rabbit, long loin, meaty rump.

I don't see the Flemish Giant bringing anything positive to the mix. Others may have another view.
 

Baymule

Herd Master
Joined
Aug 22, 2010
Messages
18,697
Reaction score
46,036
Points
793
Location
Northeast Texas
Flemish Giants are very large, slow growing rabbits. If you try to make a fryer out of one, you'll get a lot of bones and not a lot of meat. Stick with the NZ or Californian.
 

woodsie

Loving the herd life
Joined
Dec 19, 2012
Messages
613
Reaction score
103
Points
123
Location
Kamloops, BC, Canada
Around my neck of the woods most people are passing off flemish mixes as meat rabbits. In fact a lady I am selling one of my does to was planning on breeding her to a flemish giant to get a bigger rabbit...I don't think it is a smart idea and told her so but she already has the buck.

I have heard breeding to a larger buck can be dangerous too...anyone know if that is true? I would hate to sell her a doe that dies kindling. I think efficient feed conversion is key in meat rabbits and from what I have heard/read Flemish Giants are pigs and eat way too much...plus you have to have way bigger cages.
 

couchhound274

Exploring the pasture
Joined
May 21, 2013
Messages
34
Reaction score
0
Points
12
It is possible to breed flemish crosses to get a rabbit of bigger size and less bone but it takes a while. Where i use my flemish crosses for dog food the meat to bone ratio isnt a huge problem for me. And yes breeding a smaller doe to a huge buck is a bit dangerous. Always breed big does to smaller bucks. Thats like breeding a Clydesdale stallion to a mini mare!!!!
 

UnlabeledMama

Exploring the pasture
Joined
May 16, 2013
Messages
45
Reaction score
1
Points
17
Location
Western North Carolina
I would definitely use a Flemish doe if I did!

It's proving very hard to find good size rabbits where I live, so I'm trying to figure my options.
 

PendergrassRanch

Loving the herd life
Joined
Jul 6, 2012
Messages
777
Reaction score
62
Points
108
Location
Northern California
We have 3/4 Cal 1/4 flemish right now. We haven't bred them yet but they are fryer size at 8 weeks. We plan to cross them with some NZ/American I am getting soon.
 

brentr

Ridin' The Range
Joined
Apr 19, 2011
Messages
377
Reaction score
3
Points
59
Location
northern Virginia
woodsie said:
I have heard breeding to a larger buck can be dangerous too...anyone know if that is true? I would hate to sell her a doe that dies kindling.
When crossing rabbit breeds ALWAYS breed smaller breed buck to larger breed doe. The reverse of this can cause kindling issues, even death for a doe trying to kindle kits that are just too large for her body & birth canal.

On a related note, one of my best does is a NZ/Giant Chin cross. I've crossed her with Silver Fox, Californian, and NZ bucks and have really liked the kits she produces from all those pairings. I'm sure there are some inefficiencies in there if you really had the numbers (I don't), but to my eyeball and kitchen scale, her kits are bigger at slaughter than the Cali/NZ or purebred kits of the same age being harvested at the same time from the grow out pen. Not a lot, but noticeable. But I agree with other posters...I'd never breed her back to a giant breed like FG for meat purposes.
 

ohiogoatgirl

True BYH Addict
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
535
Reaction score
189
Points
213
Location
ohio
you don't want to breed a big buck to a smaller doe. for sure unless its only slightly bigger. like don't breed a big 13lb NZ to a 4.5lb dutch doe. if you want Flemish crosses then use a Flemish doe.

no Flemish grow bone and ears first. its at like 14-20wks that they fill out with meat. if you are focusing on furs to tan and the meat is a bonus then they might be great for you. otherwise they eat tons and aren't meaty within fryer age.

as far as crosses, everything I've ever heard is that 3/4 meat breed 1/4flemish crossing to meat breed is the best. or less percentage Flemish. I have no experience with it so far. just got a NZ red doe, NZ red buck, 3/4NZ 1/4Flemish GTS doe. they are all the same size, same age {~3.5months} but I will be breeding the NZ red buck to them all as well as my current cali doe, already breeding age.

if it were me I would not sell a NZ, etc doe to someone who says they are going to breed her to a Flemish buck. the only way I could see that working would be a small FG buck (13-15lb) and a large doe (13+lb) that is proven.
 
Top