June 01, 2012

Scientists link factors affecting rabbit health

JAS coverBy Madeline McCurry-Schmidt / ASAS Communications

A team of scientists from Spain have teamed up with rabbit producers to improve rabbit care and breeding. Researchers Luis de la Fuente and Juan Rosell collected data from 2,775 rabbits to determine the relationship between body weight and body condition score in different breeding lines. The study was published online May 14 in the Journal of Animal Science Papers in Press

As expected, rabbit age and genetics influenced body weight and condition, but several other factors played a role. The scientists saw a big difference in size between male and female rabbits of the same breed. The researchers also found that body weight decreased in response to moderate illness.

How exactly did these factors affect rabbit growth? Read the paper at jas.fass.org to learn more.