Different rearing systems for fattening rabbits: Performance and carcass characteristics

Department of Animal Science, University of Torino, via L. da Vinci 44, 10095 Grugliasco, Italy.
Meat Science (Impact Factor: 2.62). 01/2009; 82(2):200-4. DOI: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2009.01.011
Source: PubMed


To evaluate the effect of different rearing systems and sex on productive performance and carcass composition and quality, 80 rabbits (40 males and 40 females) of Carmagnola breed were reared from 9 to 16 weeks of age in individual California type cages (0.12m(2)) or in group ground pens (0.25m(2)/head). The animals were kept in standard and uniform environmental conditions and fed the same ad libitum pellet feed. Data on live weight and feed intake were recorded. At the end of the fattening period 10 animals per group were slaughtered and data provided in the World Rabbit Science Association (WRSA) standard method were collected, as well as pH and meat colour. Animals reared in ground pens showed lower productive performances, while, as to slaughtering performances, rabbits reared in cages showed the highest slaughtering weight and also the highest weights for most body parts. Gender slightly affected productive and slaughtering performances: females showed higher feed consumption and higher perirenal fat weight than males. Meat colour parameters showed significant differences in Longissimus lumborum and Biceps femoris due to housing systems and gender effects. In both muscle, rearing system affected pH only 24h after slaughter.

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    • "The proportions of both perirenal and total dissectible fat, which includes scapular, inguinal and perirenal fat, were significantly lower in rabbits reared at the lower stocking density than in rabbits reared at the higher stocking density. Similarly, Lazzaroni et al. (2009b) observed decreased fat deposition in pen-housed rabbits (higher disposable space) compared with rabbits reared in individual cages. Villalobos et al. (2008) observed that the proportion of scapular fat increased linearly with increasing levels of stocking density, but perirenal fat was unaffected. "
    World Rabbit Science 03/2014; 22(1):41. DOI:10.4995/wrs.2014.1176 · 0.82 Impact Factor
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    • "Rabbit is used for many researches as an important livestock for production of meat in most Mediterranean countries, offering more than 30% of world production. Besides, rabbits reproductive capacity, a feature that is attractive for its use as lab animal too.(Lazzaroni et al., 2009). The protective effect of myrrh and/or vitamin C against DZN-induced oxidative stress in our rabbit model could be either direct by inhibiting lipid peroxidation and scavenging free radicals or indirect through the enhancement of the activity superoxide dismutase and CAT; the enzymatic free radicals' scavengers in the cells. Therefore,"
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    ABSTRACT: Diazinon (DZN) is a widely used organophosphrus synthetic and acaricide widely used for agricultural and veterinary purposes. However, its human and animal exposure leads to hepatocardiotoxicity. Our experimental objective was to evaluate protective effects of Myrrh; Commiphora molmol or/ and ascorbic acid; vitamin C against DZN-induced hepatocardiotoxicity in healthy male white New Zealand rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus). DZN-treated animals revealed significant alterations in serum biochemical parameters related to hepatic and cardiac injuries. There was a significant increase in hepatic and cardiac lipid peroxidation and significant inhibition in tissue antioxidant biomarkers due to DZN intoxication. Both myrrh and vitamin C protect against DZN-induced serum as well as hepatic and cardiac tissue biochemical parameters when used alone or in combination along with DZN-intoxication. Furthermore, both myrrh and vitamin C produced synergetic hepatocardioprotective and antioxidant effects. Therefore, it could be concluded that myrrh and/or vitamin C administration able to minimize the toxic effects of DZN by its free radical-scavenging and potent antioxidant activity.
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    • "Rabbit production for meat is a very important livestock activity in most Mediterranean countries, supplying more than 30% of world production. Besides, rabbits reproduce rapidly, a feature that is attractive and can be capitalized on by the farmer to satisfy any growth in consumer demand (Lazzaroni et al., 2009). Nowadays animal welfare raises interest worldwide . "
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    ABSTRACT: Twenty four New-Zealand White rabbit of both sexes (12 males and 12 females), 4 weeks old, with nearly equal live BW at the beginning of the experiment were randomly allotted to three groups of 8 rabbit each (4 males and 4 females). Three groups were established according to the cage floor type. The first group was raised on wire mesh cage floor throughout the experiment. The second group was raised on plastic hollow mat and the third was on rubber hollow mat. Rabbits were weighed at the beginning of the experiment and at weekly intervals thereafter during the experimental period (7 weeks). Individual BW and feed consumption throughout the experimental period were recorded weekly. BW gain, feed conversion ratio, ear and eye lesions, total and differential leucocytes count were also calculated. The results demonstrated that the cage floor type affected drinking and agonistic behavior but did not affect any other behaviors. Rabbits raised on wire mesh floor showed the highest proportion of agonistic behavior. The cage floor type had no influence on BW, feed consumption, BW gain and feed conversion ratio of growing rabbit during the last three weeks of experiment. The incidence of ear and eye lesions was higher in cages with wire mesh (25%) than cages with plastic and rubber mat floor (12.5%). wire caged rabbits revealed significant (P = 0.05) increase in white blood cells and lymphocyte counts. It could be suggested that placing of plastic or rubber mat on wire mesh of rabbit' cages has an important effect on reducing the incidance of ear and eye lesions caused by aggressive behaviors and reducing the effect of stress on the total and differential leucocytes count, as well as improving their welfare state.
    02/2013; 3(2):34-42. DOI:10.5455/jva.20130219032609
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