World Rabbit Science <p style="text-align: justify; text-justify: inter-ideograph; margin: 0cm 0cm 6.0pt 0cm;">World Rabbit Science is the official journal of the World Rabbit Science Association (WRSA). One of the main objectives of the WRSA is to encourage communication and collaboration among individuals and organisations associated with rabbit production and rabbit science in general.</p> Universitat Politècnica de València en-US World Rabbit Science 1257-5011 <p><a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><img src="" alt="" /> </a></p> <p>This journal is licensed under a "<a href="" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0)</a>".</p> <p> </p> Feeding behaviour of the growing rabbit fed freely or restricted, and impact on performances and digestive organs <p>This study aimed to determine how rabbits’ feeding and drinking behaviour was influenced by a feed restriction programme, and how performance and the morphometry of the digestive tract and lymphoid organs were influenced. At weaning (28 d old), 432 rabbits were housed in cages of 6, and allotted to 2 groups according to feed intake level: <em>ad libitum</em> feeding (AL group) from 28 to 72 d old, and feed intake (R group) restricted to 70% of AL intake from 28 till 49 d old, followed by <em>ad libitum</em> feeding from 50 till 72 d old. During the restriction, the R group intake was 36% lower than that of the AL group. When returning to an <em>ad libitum</em> feeding, the R group intake increased by 270%, thus exceeding the AL intake by 26% (<em>P</em>=0.03). The daily weight gain was reduced by 28% for R group during the restriction (40.0 vs. 55.7 g/d; <em>P</em>&lt;0.001), whereas the feed conversion was improved (−11%, 1.86 vs. 2.09; <em>P</em>&lt;0.001). The restriction led to a shorter intestine (−15%, 202 vs. 233; <em>P</em>&lt;0.05) and lighter spleen (−15%, 4.8 vs. 5.9; <em>P</em>&lt;0.05), whereas the number of Peyer patches was not influenced. Most of the growth delays of lymphoid tissues observed at the end of the restriction period in the R rabbits remained until the end of the experiment. The feeding activity of AL rabbits mainly occurred during the dark period (19:00-09:00), with 16% of rabbits eating. The R group strongly and massively started their feeding activity at feed distribution time (8:30-09:00), with 65% of rabbit eating at the start, then 35% still eating half an hour later. Feeding activity of R group remained high for 8 h after the feed distribution, with 28% of rabbits having a feeding activity between 9:30 and 17:00. R group had a higher number of meals (+30%) and drinks (+28%), and a longer meal duration (+30%) compared to AL group. R group consumed 63% of the intake within 6-7 h compared to <em>ad libitum</em> fed rabbits, which spread their intake over 15 h. No changes in social behaviour (access to feed or drinking, resting, aggressiveness) were detected, suggesting that this restriction programme did not impair welfare compared to that of ad libitum fed animals.</p> Mélanie Martignon Christine Burel Maryse Guinebretière Gilbert Postollec Didier Huonnic Eric Boilletot Virginie Michel Thierry Gidenne Copyright (c) 2022 Thierry Noël Gidenne 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 119 130 10.4995/wrs.2022.14513 Genetic diversity and virulence gene profiles of Escherichia coli from diarrhoeal rabbits in Sichuan Province, China <p><em>Escherichia coli</em> (<em>E. coli</em>) can cause diarrhoea in a wide range of hosts. Moreover, some trains with high virulence and drug resistance pose a serious threat to public health and livestock products. Diarrhoea caused by <em>E. coli</em> outbreaks in rabbitries result in serious economic losses. The aim of this study was to investigate the distribution of virulence genes and molecular genetic characteristics of <em>E. coli</em> from diarrhoeal rabbits in the main rearing areas of Sichuan province, China in 2015-2017. In total, 39 <em>E. coli</em> isolates were identified and undivided divided into 17 sequence types by multilocus sequence typing (MLST) and grouped in 22 clusters by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. Polymerase chain reaction tests detected 6 virulence genes: <em>eae</em> (41.0%), <em>ler</em> (41.0%), <em>ral</em> (33.3%), <em>afr2</em> (10.3%), <em>irp2</em> (15.4%) and <em>astA</em> (7.7%) of the tested 17 virulence genes identifying 16 enteropathogenic <em>E. coli</em> (EPEC) isolates. The main sequence types U328, ST328 and ST20 carried rabbit EPEC associated virulence genes (<em>eae</em>, <em>ler</em>, <em>ral</em> and <em>afr2</em>). The results showed that the distribution of virulence genes varied by year and area; genotype had major types in local rearing areas but was of high diversity in Sichuan province.</p> Yuqing Yang Shizhen Wang Yi Geng Hanzhong Liu Zhenyang Qin Yang Feng Zexiao Yang Weimin Lai Copyright (c) 2022 Yuqing Yang, Shizhen Wang, Yi Geng, Hanzhong Liu, Zhenyang Qin, Yang Feng, Zexiao Yang, Weimin Lai 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 131 140 10.4995/wrs.2022.15273 Genetic analysis of some productive and reproductive traits in New Zealand White rabbits A total of 625 progenies of New Zealand White rabbits, kept at Sakha Experimental Rabbits, Kafr-El-Sheikh, Government, belonging to Animal production Research Institute, Ministry of Agriculture, Dokki, Cairo, Egypt, during 2010-2017 were used to estimate the genetic parameters and phenotypic and genetic trends for some reproductive and productive traits. Traits studied were litter size at birth (LSB), litter weight at birth (LWB), kit body weight for four weeks (BW1), body weight for 6 weeks (BW2), body weight for 8 weeks (BW3), and marketing weight (BW4). Data were analyzed by using a multivariate animal model. Direct heritability estimates were 0.05, 0.20, 0.23, 0.24, 0.31 and 0.34 for LSB, LWB, BW1, BW2, BW3 and BW4, respectively. All phenotypic and genetic correlations among traits studied were positive and ranged from 0.21 to 0.90 for phenotypic correlations and from 0.04 to 0.78 for genetic correlations. Annual phenotypic changes for LSB, LWB, BW1, BW2, BW3, and BW4 were positive and equal to 0.06, 15.96 g, 18.70 g, 23.15 g, 27.72 g, and 50.69 g, respectively. Also, genetic changes for LSB, LWB, BW4, BW6, BW8, and MW were 0.20, 12.50 g, 14.20 g, 16.25 g, 20.09, and 40.10 g, respectively. The moderate estimates of heritability for body weights confirmed that improvement of these traits can be achieved by genetic selection. Also, positive and significant phenotypic and genetic trends for all traits studied indicated that selection for economic traits is very useful to increase the reproductive and productive performance of rabbits. Shimma Mohamed Farouk Adel Salah Khattab Amira Noweir Navid Ghavi Hossein-Zadeh Copyright (c) 2022 S.M. Farouk, A.S. Khattab, M.E. Noweir, Navid Ghavi Hossein-Zadeh 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 141 146 10.4995/wrs.2022.15939 Descriptive analysis of rabbit meat marketing parameters in the north-east of Algeria <p>As in many African countries, the rabbit meat sector in Algeria lacks a structured market system. Very few studies have approached this issue. Thus, this paper aims to investigate the main parameters of rabbit meat marketing. To meet this objective, a descriptive survey method was provided, using a structured questionnaire, literature review and direct observation. Our study has covered the key areas of rabbit production including ten <em>wilayas</em> (i.e. geopolitical districts, regions, provinces, areas) situated in the northeastern part of Algeria. A survey was carried out among 32 butchers. Data were obtained through a field survey using face-to-face interviews. The result shows that the butchers are mostly men, belonging to six main <em>wilayas</em>; the majority of them are married, with an average age of 45 yr, and most have secondary school level or baccalaureate educational qualifications. Cross tabulations have shown a significant coefficient between location of butchers and four marketing factors i.e. rabbit selling criteria, sales volume per week, type of meat sold, and type of clientele. Hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) and principal component analysis (PCA) allow us to classify and to show the correlation between the different <em>wilayas</em> and the influential marketing factors. Rabbit meat market seems to be modest, fragmented and not organised, due to many obstacles, mainly lack of knowledge and awareness of rabbit meat, high cost production, high selling price and unavailability. Despite these setbacks, there is an opportunity to enhance rabbit marketing by increasing production, supporting breeders, reducing the selling price of rabbit and educating people about the nutritional quality of this kind of meat. To the best of our knowledge, this research is the first to create the sociogeographic profile of rabbit butchers and investigate the association between the different aspects and factors linked to rabbit meat marketing.</p> Ibtissem Sanah Abdelghani Boudjellal Samira Becila Copyright (c) 2022 Ibtissem Sanah, Abdelghani Boudjellal, Samira Becila 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 163 180 10.4995/wrs.2022.16649 Lincomycin toxicity in farm rabbits: report on a severe case <p>In this study, we describe a case of severe toxicity by lincomycin contamination in feed on a farm housing 1800 rabbit does. The farm used a two-batch system, with parities 24 and 3 d ago, respectively. The rabbits that had consumed the feed developed anorexia 24-48 h later, followed by enteritis-diarrhoea and death. Mortality was &gt;70 % in does, &gt;50 % in 28-day-old kits. None of the 7-day-old kits died from this cause. A total of 125 non-lactating does that had consumed another type of feed from the same supplier were not affected; 10 of them were given the contaminated feed and the same problem occurred. Treatment based on presumptive diagnosis was unsuccessful. Microbiological and histopathological studies identified Clostridium spiroforme, which predominated over coliform bacteria. Toxicology studies requested by the producers verified the existence of 1.6 ppm amoxicillin in the first place; weeks later, further analyses determined 410 ppm lincomycin in doe feed. It also contained the prescribed quantity of 199 ppm tilmicosin. We recommended the stamping-out on the farm.</p> Joan Maria Rosell Ricard Garriga Jordina Casas Natàlia Majó Jaume Alomar Copyright (c) 2022 Joan Maria Rosell, Ricard Garriga, Jordina Casas, Natàlia Majó, Jaume Alomar 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 147 152 10.4995/wrs.2022.16819 Pharmaceutical characterization and pharmacokinetics of florfenicol-loaded alginate dried beads in rabbits <p>The pharmacokinetic variables of a new formulation of florfenicol included in dried bean of alginate (FADBs), its acceptance as in food medication, and its relationship with theoretical minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values of the main pathogens in rabbits, are presented. FADBs sought to mask the unpleasant taste of florfenicol while enhancing sustained absorption in a day to facilitate and optimise its dosage in this species. The entrapment efficiency was determined to be 94-98% and 73.56±3.26% of drug loading. No reduction in food consumption was detected, nor selectivity when choosing from their usual food. The elimination half-life was 1.23 to 2.4 h slower than the one previously reported in the literature. Possible flip-flop pharmacokinetics is proposed for FADBs in rabbits, thus complying better with the key pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics (PK/PD) ratio of t≥MIC. Also, if a MIC<sub>2.0 μg/mL</sub> is taken as the cut-off point for florfenicol in rabbits, then ad libitum intake of FADBs in their standard diet is sufficient to maintain plasma concentrations of florfenicol above this level during the whole dosing interval of 24 h. Additionally, FADBs are a low-cost and attractive drug delivery system for the oral controlled release of florfenicol in rabbits.</p> Lilia Gutierrez Olvera Xelhua Marcos Benitez Perla García-Guzmán Minerva Monroy-Barreto Héctor Sumano Copyright (c) 2022 Lilia Gutierrez Olvera, Xelhua Marcos Benitez, Perla García-Guzmán, Minerva Monroy-Barreto, Héctor Sumano 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 153 162 10.4995/wrs.2022.16381 Feed incorporation of dehydrated sainfoin: effects on health and performances of does and growing rabbits <p>The performance and health of does and growing rabbits were compared over three consecutive reproductive cycles for three groups of 20 nulliparous does and their litters (DS0, DS13, DS26) fed isonutritive feeds containing 0, 13 or 26% dehydrated sainfoin (DS, Perly cultivar). Feed intake, live weight and fertility of does were not affected by DS feed incorporation. The number of live kits at birth increased linearly with increasing DS incorporation (+1.5 from DS0 to DS26, <em>P</em>=0.042) and the stillborn rate tended to linearly decrease in groups fed DS (16.6 vs. 10.4%, <em>P</em>=0.086). Increasing the level of DS in feeds had no impact on the growth of the kits before weaning, but led to a linear reduction in the post-weaning growth rate (<em>P</em>&lt;0.01, –2 for 26% DS), whereas the feed conversion ratio increased linearly with DS incorporation (<em>P</em>&lt;0.01, 2.91 vs. 2.98, resp. for DS0 and DS26). No effect of DS feed incorporation was detectable on doe and kit mortality rates. Excretion of coccidia by both does and growing rabbits was not affected by DS incorporation. For 70 d old rabbits, the levels of immunoglobulins A and G and of white blood cells were not significantly different between groups and high levels of IgG (average: 8.1 mg/mL) were recorded, suggesting a coccidia infestation. Overall doe mortality remained under 5% and was not affected by the reproductive cycle (<em>P</em>=0.24). The stillborn rate decreased from 18 to 6%, (<em>P</em>&lt;0.01) from cycle 1 to 2, and the number of live rabbits at birth increased from 8.0 to 10.7 (<em>P</em>&lt;0.01). Kit mortality remained low before weaning (under 2.5%), and very low after weaning (&lt;1%). Excretion of coccidia by does decreased from cycle 1 to cycle 3, whereas excretions by growing rabbits remained stable.</p> Cecile Gayrard Antoine Bretaudeau Pascale Gombault Hervé Hoste Thierry Gidenne Copyright (c) 2022 Cecile Gayrard, Antoine Bretaudeau, Pascale Gombault, Hervé Hoste, Thierry Gidenne 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 107 118 10.4995/wrs.2022.16874 Abstracts of the Webinar on Cuniculture, WEBIASESCU 2020 <p>The first Webinar on Cuniculture, WebiAsescu 2020, organised by the Spanish Association of Cuniculture (ASESCU), was held online 11<sup>st</sup> and 24<sup>th</sup> November, and 17<sup>th</sup> December, 2020, co-organised with Grupo Editorial Agricola and Henar Comunicación Agroalimentaria. This meeting was programmed in substitution of the annual edition of Symposium on Cuniculture, cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The webinar series was arranged in thee editions consisting each one of two main talks and 5-6 oral communications. First webinar focussed on “Marketing of rabbit meat and new consumer trends” and was integrated by two main talks: “How to improve the marketing of rabbit meat” (by María Luz de Santos, from Intercun) and “Analysis of the status and future perspectives of rabbit meat production and industry in Spain” (by Luis Montero, from Polytechnic University of Valencia). Second webinar was related to “Pathology: coronavirus and control of myxomatoxis and viral hemorrhagic disease” and included two main talks: “Coronavirus and rabbit farming” (by Francisco Parra, from University of Oviedo) and “Myxomatosis and viral hemorrhagic disease: key aspects of its control” (by Juan M. Rosell, from Cunivetservice). Third webinar was devoted to “Present and future of the sector: Legislation, certification and animal welfare” and two main talks were presented: “Conclusions and recommendations EFSA: Health and welfare of rabbits on farms” (by Angela Trocino, from University of Padova) and “Indicators of animal welfare in rabbits. How to do a full assessment” (by Antoni Dalmau, from IRTA). Moreover, a total of 16 oral communications were presented by research teams from Spain, Algeria, Mexico, France and United Kingdom. Each webinar was attended by more than 300 participants from several European, American and African countries. Abstracts of the contributions presented are reported below.</p> Abstracts, Conferences, Congresses, Symposiums... Copyright (c) 2022 World rabbit science 2022-06-29 2022-06-29 30 2 181 186 10.4995/wrs.2022.17509