Friday, June 13, 2008

A Perfect Harmony: Jersey Wooly and Standard Chinchilla Rabbits

For some time now I have rethinking the breeds that I raise. Karli has often said that I should just sell out of the standard chinchillas and just focus on my jersey woolies. Yes, it is true that I do better with my Jersey Woolies, then I do with my Standard Chinchillas, but that is due to the lack of exhibitors in Standard Chinchillas, and the extremely rare chances for legs.

Anyways, I really do think that having both the Jersey Woolies and the Standard Chinchillas are a perfect harmony, and this is why! (I have also included some random cute pictures that haven't made it to the blog or the site yet)

Yeah, I do agree that both the Standard Chinchillas and the Jersey Woolies have their pros and their cons, just like any of the other rabbit breeds.

For one thing the chins do eat A Lot more than the woolies, and with the increase in feed costs, and my increase in production, the feed bill has gone WAY up. They also take up more room and require larger cages. Because they are a bigger rabbit and pack down more food, they poop and pee a lot more than the jersey woolies do, and cleaning their cages is usually more often, as the trays fill up much quicker. Another thing is that the Standard Chinchillas only come in one color. I have always thought that breeders who can do one breed in one variety are very disciplined. And as you can see...that definitely isn't me!

Funny Looking M an' M's Miss-D-fy

This is not to say that the woolies aren't immune from their share of pros and cons! The woolies of course are a lot more work in the grooming department. Wooly juniors typically can only be shown for a good 4 weeks, before they have to retire to the back of the barn until they get their senior coats in. The woolies also tend to make their cage's very hairy! So even though I have to clean chin trays more often, it actually takes me longer to clean the wooly cages because I have to get all that hair off! Especially when animals are moulting....Eeeeeek! The last thing that I can think of that sometimes gets on my nerves with the woolies is feeling their bodies. If an animal has a super dense coat...sometimes I just get so fed up because I just cant feel the body to know which animal to breed him or her too!

Look Mommy, I'm Batman!
Cute nose marking on this little broken...even though she did have pretty big ears!

One thing that I especially like about the Standard Chinchillas is that they have a pretty long junior showing season. Once they are in coat at about 13 weeks, they stay in coat until that senior fur starts coming in. The chins are practically grooming free. Also, I love that with the chins I almost don't even have to feel their body to know what their type is...I can "see" it! And when I am fed up with trying to feel wooly bodies I just go to the chins and just look at the type and play with them. The Standard Chinchillas keep me sane.

A young M an' M's Cellophane

But I must give credit the woolies as they bring me a lot of joy too! Although their coats are more work, and grooming is more often, when I get a really nicely conditioned wooly, I am very proud and it means a lot to me. Plus, the woolies come in a ton of colors, and just raising Tan Patterns, Selfs and AOVs there is plenty of room to play with colors and be surprised to see what pops out of the nestbox!

Line o' Chins

Overall, I think the Jersey Woolies provide me with that Fancy, and Fantasy elements that the Standard Chinchillas do not, but the Standard Chinchillas provide the element of Sanity, and thus it all seems to work out. In the next few months or so, I do plan on increasing my Standard Chinchilla stock, as I really do want to work on them a bit more than I have in the past 2 years. Though, that is not to say that I will be down sizing my woolies to accommodate the increase in chins. I actually plan on increasing my wooly stock as well, in order to progress my woolies a little faster by devoting more holes to breeding does. Therefore, in the next couple of months I plan on acquiring more cages to expand the herd.

Anyways, I just thought that a post was in order to explain my interesting combo of rabbit breeds that I have decided to raise.

M an' M's Fruit Loop
now living with Tawnee of WA State

Therefore, Until I post again,




Carlson said...

Hi Ashley
You are lucky to have both, and not have a husband that constantly wants you to get rid of your rabbits.
I have four woollies - One Sr. Buck, one Jr. Buck and two Jr. Does.
The woollies so far have been my favorite of the breeds. I also have Lionheads, Mini Rexes, Holland Lops, a Velveteen Lop, and a mix New Zeland/California/Chinchilla? Totaling 15 rabbits.
I also have one dog and one cat.
Two kids and a husband.
I am looking to increase my Jersey Herd. Hoping that my daughter would get tired of the Hollands, or at least switch over to the Fuzzy Lops. The Mini Rexes are fine as they just need to be handled, clean-up is about what you get for your chinchillas - maybe a little less as they are not as big. The New Zeland mix eats about three times as much as all the other rabbits, and the Velveteen Lop eats almost as much as the New Zeland mix.
I want to cut back to just the Jerseys, and maybe the mini rexes - they just are not as calm and loving as the jerseys are.
From Oregon

Kelinci said...

I like jersey wooly breed.
Rabbit Kelinci