Technical note: Rabbit meat production under a small scale production system as a source of animal protein in a rural area of Mexico
Keywords:rabbit production, meat consumption, community
AbstractThe aim of this study was to obtain information on rabbit meat consumption habits and rabbit production in Xocotlan, a rural community in Mexico. In the first part of the study, 20 families were requested to describe the rabbit production situation in the community, before 1989 and during 1995. Results indicated that before 1989, the percent of rabbit breeders was 70% of the population while during 1995 a decline to 45% was noticed. This fact can be explained by the outbreak of the Viral Hemorrhagic Disease in 1989. The percentage of the breeders that raised one to five does before 1989 was 64% and decreased to 55% in 1995. Seventy two percent of the breeders before 1989 assigned their production to self-consumption while in 1995 this percentage increased to 89%. Moreover, the breeders that ate rabbit meat one to two times per month before 1989 was 79% while in 1995 this percent reduced to 67%. In the second part of the study, a rabbit production program was performed with nine families, five from Xocotlan and four from Purificacion. The results showed that one family from Xocotlan got a litter size at birth of 9.5±1.7 kits, while two families did not get any results due to abnormal behaviour of the does. In general, the breeders from Xocotlan obtained higher performance than those from Purificacion. The range of rabbit meat consumption per capita per month was 310 to 644 g and the highest meat consumption was recorded by the Xocotlan families.
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