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Processing Day

September 27th, 2013 at 01:05 am

We dispatched four of our meat rabbits today. From a live weight of 22 pounds, 11.7 ounces, we got 11 pounds, 6.3 ounces of rabbit meat and 12.3 ounces of livers, for a total of 12 pounds, 2.6 oz of food. They ate about $7 worth of feed, $1 worth of hay, and $4 worth of vegetables over their life, so it comes out to about $1 per pound. We could get a smidge more if we saved the hearts and kidneys, too, but we don't. They go to the wildlife center along with the heads and other offal.

I'd say the rabbits are paying for themselves and we are ending up with lots of good, low-fat, lean white meat in the freezer at a price that just can't be beat by anything but the cheapest chicken hindquarters and you can bet those chickens never saw daylight.

Phoebe gave birth this morning, another large litter with 8 healthy kits. We'll have a break from kindling for a while, as the next two rabbits to give birth are only one week pregnant, so have three weeks and four days to go. In another couple of months we should be able to have rabbit twice a week if we so desire.

I am going to can some rabbit meat this week and some rabbit broth for making soup later this winter, or possibly canning carrot, potato, celery, bits of meat, and onion right in the broth and can it as soup. I would also like to make up some rabbit nuggets for the freezer. And maybe some rabbit stir-fry kits, too.

That means I'll need to dig up some potatoes and get some organic carrots from the farmer's market or the no spray garden in town. I doubt anyone has grown celery here, it is kind of hit or miss in our zone, but I can get it from the store if needs must be. Organic though. It sucks up pesticides just like carrots.

It would be great to have enough soups done up to get through winter and spring, but that may not be possible yet.

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The repair around the skylights and the final application of stuff to make the floors look like shiny wood instead of dull wood, will get put on this weekend. We just need to find out how long it takes for the shiny stuff to dry. Then we'll go in with the realtor and see where things stand.

4 Responses to “Processing Day”

  1. TashaC. Says:

    How do you guys kill the rabbits? I always wondered how small places like your operate compare to the big commercial places.

  2. LuckyRobin Says:

    We use something called the Rabbit Wringer: http://www.therabbitwringer.com/. It dislocates the neck, killing the rabbit instantly and humanely. Before that we used a pellet gun, but it did not work as well. This way is pain free.

    Other people use the broomstick method, which is similar to the wringer, but instead of being on the wall and pulling down, you place the rabbit on the ground, put a broomstick over the back of the neck, step on either side of the rabbit holding the broomstick down, and yank up to dislocate the neck. It is hard on the back though. Some folks are strong enough to just dislocate with their hands, but it is more difficult and harder on the body (of the person, not the rabbit). And of course there are the folks that whack them on the back of the head with a piece of rebar, but we couldn't ever do that.

  3. TashaC. Says:

    Thanks for doing it as humanely as you can. I am a vegetarian, but actually prefer small business animal processing because they tend to give a better quality of life and a better death than the commercial industries.

  4. LuckyRobin Says:

    We had decided that if we were going to continue to be meat eaters, we wanted the animals to have the best lives and the most humane deaths possible. That is morphing into raising our own and doing it ourselves.

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